Octogenarian tribal rights activist Stan Swamy may be shifted out of the Taloja Central Prison in Navi Mumbai to Arthur Road Jail in the city. The Taloja jail superintendent, in a report, informed the court on Monday that while the jail authorities did not plan to shift him presently, considering his age and ailments, they were likely to move him to Arthur Road Jail, which had government hospitals nearby.
Swamy’s advocate had made a plea on December 4, seeking that Swamy not be shifted from Taloja Jail without their being heard and the order of the court. The court had called for a report from the jail in this regard.
The matter will now be heard by the court on December 21. His advocate had said that Swamy had been informed by the jail superintendent that he would be shifted to another jail. Swamy had, in his plea before the court, said that he did not want to be shifted from Taloja prison as his fellow jail inmates, Vernon Gonsalves and Arun Ferreira, were helping him with daily chores and to prepare his defence.
A jail official told The Free Press Journal on December 4 that only those prisoners admitted to Taloja Jail after October 29 were being shifted to prisons of their jurisdiction, which had been closed for new admissions during the pandemic. Since Swamy had been lodged in Taloja prison from October 9 onwards, he was not eligible to be shifted and there was no question of him being shifted.
On Monday, the National Investigation Agency (NIA) also filed its reply before the court, opposing the bail application of Swamy on the merits of the case.
Swamy had also made a plea earlier asking for the NIA or the prison to return his bag. Both informed the court on Monday that they did not have his bag.