Kejriwal aims to run Government from Tihar

| | New Delhi
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Kejriwal aims to run Government from Tihar

Tuesday, 02 April 2024 | Staff Reporter | New Delhi

While serving custody in the largest prison of Asia, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has been granted access to his home tiffins, Isabgol, glucose, toffees, banana with scheduled diet since he is diabetic. From waking up as early as 5.30 am alongwith all inmates of Tihar Jail, the Delhi CM has expressed his desires to conduct the daily meetings related to governance and has sought permission to flip through the epics Ramayana and Mahabharata besides a couple of authored books.

The current prison rules however do not allow for meetings and this sets up a possible explosive clash between the AAP and the Central Government.

Kejriwal who made his up with his political ambition as a anti-corruption crusader, has been lodged in Jail number 2, where he will have home-cooked meals, bottled drinking water, and a supply of toffees in case of a sudden drop in blood sugar levels. 

Kejriwal is the fourth leader from Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) to be kept in Tihar Jail. Former Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia, who is also an accused in the liquor policy case, has been imprisoned in jail number 1 while former Health Minister Satyendar Jain has been kept in jail number 7. Rajya Sabha MP Sanjay Singh is serving his custody in jail number 5 while the Bharat Rashtra Samithi’s K Kavitha is in Jail number 6 of the women’s jail. It is not clear that whether Kejriwal will be allowed an increased number of meetings — with Government officials and Ministers — given he remains Delhi’s Chief Minister.

According to an application, the applicant is suffering lrom Hyperglycemia (diabetes), which requires continuous monitoring by frequently checking the sugar level by using a sugar sensor, charger of sugar machine, sensor reader and Glucometer. Due to which his immune system is very weak and he is prone to allergies and other infections and in order to avoid spread of any infection and in best interest of the applicant’s health, concerned authorities may be directed to permit the accused to use his own mattress, bed- sheet, two pillows and quilt in judicial custody.

According to counsel, Kejriwal through his counsel sought permission to use his own mattress, bed-sheet, two pillows, to carry essential medicines and medical devices, required for monitoring and controlling diabetes, Isabgol, Glucose, Toffees,Banana notpad and pen in judicial custody.

Like other prisoners, Kejriwal’s day in Tihar jail will usually begin at 6:30 am. Prisoners are served tea and a few slices of bread for breakfast. Following this, the AAP national convenor will either leave for the Court, in case of a scheduled hearing, or hold discussions with his lawyers inside the prison premises.

According to sources, lunch in Tihar is usually served between 10:30 am to 11 am, consisting of rice or around 5 chapatis, along with pulses and vegetables. Post lunch, prisoners are kept locked up from noon till 3 pm.

Around 3:30 pm, Kejriwal will be served tea and two biscuits, like other prisoners after which the Delhi CM can meet his legal team. Dinner at Tihar is also served early, around 5:30 pm, post which all prisoners are locked up for the night by 7 pm.

Kejriwal will be permitted to view television, except during scheduled prison activities such as meals and lock-up periods. A selection of 18 to 20 channels covering news, entertainment, and sports are allowed to be telecast inside the premises.

Medical staff is available around the clock in cases of emergency. Kejriwal, who is diabetic, will also undergo regular checkups during his time in prison. In the event of an emergency, medical professionals and staff are on standby around the clock. Kejriwal’s lawyer sought a special meal plan due to his health condition.Kejriwal’s lawyers have urged for dietary restrictions in light of his illness. The Delhi Chief Minister can meet his family twice a week, only the members whose names are on a pre-approved list.

Their names, however, must be approved by prison authorities beforehand. His legal team has also made a request to grant Kejriwal access to three books - Bhagavad Gita, Ramayana, and How Prime Ministers Decide by journalist Neerja Chowdhury.

Meanwhile, a  protest erupted on Monday outside Tihar Jail ahead of the arrival of Kejriwal .  Scores of AAP workers, carrying party flags and wearing T-shirts with ‘Main Bhi Kejriwal’ printed on them, gathered outside the jail entrance.

A senior police officer said that they have stepped up the security arrangements outside Tihar Jail to maintain law and order. “No one will be allowed to breach law and order situation,” the officer said.  The Delhi Traffic Police said that traffic would be “affected on Jail Road in the carriageway from Delhi Cantt towards Tilak Nagar due to a demonstration” in a post on X. “Kindly avoid the stretch,” police said.

Kejriwal, who has been remanded in judicial custody till April 15, was taken to Tihar jail on Monday. Kejriwal will be lodged in Jail Number 2, an almost convict jail.  The Rouse Avenue court heard the matter earlier in the day after the Enforcement Directorate (ED) had asked for fifteen days of judicial custody of Kejriwal who was arrested in the alleged Delhi excise policy ‘scam’ case. The ED had cited his ‘non-cooperative behaviour’.

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