The Jharkhand High Court on Friday put a ban on treatment of prisoners and under-trials at VIP cottages of Rajendra Institute of Medical Sciences (RIMS), and directed the RIMS administration to treat them only in the prisoner’s ward.
The order was passed following the information given by the RIMS administration that there is a separate prisoner’s ward for those who are referred from Birsa Munda Central Jail, still they were pressurised to shift them into VIP cottages.
“Although the case has not been decided yet, an interim order has been passed by the court directing RIMS officials not to allot cottages both to the prisoners and under-trials as well,” said the amicus curie advocate Neelesh Kumar. A question was raised in the court that why those people were being allotted VIP cottages if there is a separate prisoner’s ward for them, added the advocate.
Taking a strong note of the reports of special treatment being given to VIP prisoners at RIMS here, the Court on July 13 this year had asked whether the hospital was a tourist spot, built by the Tourism department, or a place to provide equal treatment to all patients.
A division bench comprising Chief Justice Virender Singh and Justice PP Bhatt, while hearing a criminal writ initiated in the year 2013 after taking suo-moto cognizance of the media reports of RIMS becoming a safe haven for the VIP prisoners, had questioned the necessity of providing special treatment to the VIP prisoners on the pretext of medical treatment soon after they are lodged in jails. The court also directed the State Government to ensure that everyone coming to the hospital is given equal treatment.
Based on media reports that RIMS cottage had become a safe haven for the VIP prisoners who get them admitted here on the pretext of even minor ailments in order to avoid the hardships of jail, a criminal writ was initiated by the court of Justice HC Mishra after taking a suo moto cognizance of the issue