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Setback to Chidambaram, Delhi HC rejects his plea seeking bail on health ground

In a setback to former Finance Minister P Chidambaram, the Delhi High Court on Friday disposed of his petition seeking relief on health ground. Justice Suresh Kumar Kait directed the Jail superintendent that the surroundings of P Chidambaram should be cleaned, and he should be allowed to "have access to home food and mineral water, protection against mosquitoes using a net, the dwelling should be cleaned twice a day. And he also be provided a face mask."

Setback to Chidambaram, Delhi HC rejects his plea seeking bail on health ground

NEW DELHI: In a setback to former Finance Minister P Chidambaram, the Delhi High Court on Friday disposed of his petition seeking relief on health ground. Justice Suresh Kumar Kait directed the Jail superintendent that the surroundings of P Chidambaram should be cleaned, and he should be allowed to "have access to home food and mineral water, protection against mosquitoes using a net, the dwelling should be cleaned twice a day. And he also be provided a face mask."

Disposing of the petition, Justice SK Kait directed that "Regular monitoring of his blood pressure in addition to further test has to be carried out. The follow up on out patient basis be done."

On Thursday, the Delhi High Court directed the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) Director to immediately constitute a board of doctors, including former Finance Minister P Chidambaram`s family physician Doctor D Nageshwar Reddy, and examine whether the Congress leader is required to be admitted in a sterile environment in hospital or not.

Hearing interim bail plea of former Union minister on health ground, the court also directed the report must be placed before it on Friday.

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The court said that the board has to be constituted by 4 pm on Thursday, and thereafter the board has to sit and discuss this issue at 7 pm. If doctor Reddy is not able to reach Delhi, then the board could hold the meeting at 10 pm, the court said.

Chidambaram's counsel and senior Advocate Kapil Sibal pressed for providing a sterile environment to the former Finance Minister saying that he is suffering from Crohn`s disease, which has become acute during his days in custody.

Emphasising Chidambaram`s treatment under the supervision of his family doctor Reddy, Sibal also suggested that he should be admitted to Apollo hospital because he will get sterile environment there.

But, the court suggested that Chidambaram could get the best medical care at AIIMS`s private ward, where various parliamentarians, judges and eminent personalities are being treated time-to-time under the supervision of best doctors of the country.

Even Solicitor General Tushar Mehta gave a similar suggestion and told the court that Chidambaram was examined by senior doctor Ahuja and on the request of the former minister, Ahuja had a conversation with doctor Reddy.

Chidambaram is in judicial custody till November 13 following his arrest under the Prevention of Money-Laundering Act on October 16 by Enforcement Directorate.

The former Finance Minister is being probed for his alleged involvement in irregularities in granting the Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) approval to INX Media during his term as the Union Finance Minister.