Jailed AAP minister Satyendar Jain on Monday moved a plea before a Delhi court, seeking a direction to Tihar officials to provide him food items as per his religious beliefs, his lawyer said.
The application, which is likely to come up for hearing before special judge Vikas Dhull on Tuesday, also sought a direction to the prison officials to immediately conduct the minister’s medical check-up. It alleged that Jain was not being provided basic food and medical facilities inside the prison, advocate Mohd Irshad said.
The application alleged that from the day of Jain’s arrest on May 31, he has not been able to visit a Jain temple, and “being a strict Jain religious observer, he has been on a religious fast and not having cooked food, pulses, grains and milk products”. It claimed that he was “a strict adherent of Jainism”.
“For last almost six months, he has been surviving only on fruits, vegetables, seeds and dry fruits or dates. This he was purchasing from his own quota of ration available to all inmates. In the meantime, he has suffered a major fall in jail which led to a severe spine injury, for which he was treated by LNJP Hospital. He also has lung patches, which is a post-Covid symptom,” the application claimed.
It added that for the last 12 days, the jail administration has stopped providing him basic food items as per his religious beliefs.
“The jail administration has stopped providing applicant with fruits or vegetables, mixed seeds, dry fruits and dates. Since applicant is on religious fast for last six months – the dietary intake of such basic food item are necessary for his sustenance, nourishment and survival. That due to the said religious fast – there is a serious risk of protein and iron deficiency and hence, was prescribed the said diet by doctors or dieticians in jail and in hospital,” it added.
The application further added that stopping food items during the religious fast was “illegal”, “arbitrary” and amounted to “harassment”.
“The applicant is being starved by the jail authorities and is not being given sustenance or nutrition to even sustain his well-being. The applicant is entitled to the said basic food item in view of his religious beliefs and fast,” the application said, adding that the Delhi Prison Rules provides for religious diets to be given as per the local or religious customs such as during Navratras and Ramzan.
The application added that Jain was due for a medical check-up, including MRI scans, on October 21 but it was not allowed to be done by the jail authorities, “by citing one excuse or another”.
“The applicant has the right to a dignified human life,” it said.
Jain was arrested in a money laundering case based on a CBI FIR lodged against him in 2017 under the Prevention of Corruption Act.
The court had on November 17 denied bail to Jain and two others in the case.
He is accused of having laundered money through four companies allegedly linked to him.
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