VIJAYAWADA: The Andhra Pradesh High Court on Saturday constituted a three-member medical board headed by superintendent of the Government General Hospital, Guntur, to examine wounds allegedly inflicted on YSRC rebel MP K Raghu Rama Krishnam Raju by police to check the veracity of the allegation.
However, it rejected the MP’s request for the presence of his family members and the family doctor during the medical examination. Similarly, his request for allowing his personal security guards to be with him and ruled that the State police shall offer necessary protection if he was admitted as an in-patient in the hospital.
The hearing will be resumed at 12.00 pm Sunday. A division bench of the high court, comprising Justice Praveen Kumar and Justice Lalitha delivered the verdict on a letter sent to the Chief Justice by Raju’s counsel B Adinarayana Rao claiming that the MP was beaten up while he was in the custody of the CID Friday night.
The bench was constituted by the Chief Justice to look into the allegation and the request of the MP’s advocate to issue habeas corpus. At the time of the constitution of the bench and the hearing, the MP was not yet remanded in judicial custody. The remand report submitted by the police in the CID court was returned on technical grounds.
The MP’s advocate sought declaration of his detention beyond 5.00 pm as illegal arguing that his remand was not accepted by the magistrate. However, later in the evening, the amended remand report was accepted and the MP was sent to judicial custody by the CID court.
The division bench proceedings went on around the same time in the evening. In its ruling, the bench directed the medical board to examine the MP forthwith and the police to produce him before the board.
The examination of the accused shall be videographed and the footage handed over to the principal district judge, Guntur district in a sealed cover, it said, adding that if the MP’s statement was recorded by a magistrate, the same shall also be handed over to the principal district judge in a sealed cover.
The judge has been directed to forward both the covers to the vacation officer of the high court.
The bench further left the decision on whether to treat the MP as an in-patient to the medical board headed by the Guntur government hospital superintendent and comprising head of the department of general medicine of the hospital and another government doctor to be nominated by the superintendent.
Senior advocate Adinarayana Rao, in his letter to the Chief Justice, submitted that Raju was severely beaten up by the CID police so much that he was unable to walk.
Stating that he requires immediate medical assistance, he urged the Chief Justice to constitute a medical board. He also requested for personal appearance of the MP in court and pleaded that his letter be treated as a habeas corpus petition since he had no time to file a proper petition.
How could an MP be thrashed, what is happening in State, asks High Court
During the hearing, the bench rejected his request for personal appearance of the MP, pointing out that court need not examine his wounds.
The bench sought to know how could an MP be thrashed and wondered what was happening in the State. Additional Advocate General P Sudhakar Reddy, appearing for the CID, strongly condemned the allegation and termed it a tactic to up the pressure in the backdrop of the rejection of the MP’s bail application earlier in the day.
He accused the MP of misleading the court and pointed out that the MP was alright till afternoon when he had lunch brought from home by his family members. He clarified that the MP was presented before a magistrate only after medical examination.
To a query by bench whether there was any objection to the medical board, Reddy replied in the negative. The bench warned that there will be serious consequences if it was found that the wounds were fresh.
Adinarayana Rao, interjecting, urged the court to let the CRPF guard the MP during his time in the hospital as he has Y category security. However, Reddy informed the court that the MP’s security personnel had threatened the CID police when they had gone to his residence to arrest him.
On the remand report, Reddy informed the court that it was returned earlier since the Lok Sabha Speaker’s permission was not enclosed. The issue of the MP’s arrest was intimiated to the Speaker, he added.
HC rejects bail plea, directs MP to approach lower court first
The high court rejected the YSRC MP’s bail petition and directed him to approach a lower court. Disposing of his house motion petition, Justice K Suresh Reddy ruled the plea was not maintainable under the guidelines for hearing cases during summer vacation.
However, he clarified if the lower court rejected the bail application, the petitioner could file an appeal in the high court. Appearing for Raju, advocate B Adinarayana Rao argued there was no law which says a petitioner has to approach a lower court first. Additional Advocate General Sudhakar Reddy argued the plea was unsustainable under CrPC Sections 437 and 438.