DU ex-professor Saibabas ailing mother dies, her final wish was to see her son

 thehindu.com  08/02/2020 13:47:10  2

Former Delhi University professor G.N. Saibaba, who is serving life term in a jail in Maharashtra for links with Maoists, has lost his ailing mother even as his lawyer made an unsuccessful last attempt to get him to see her through video-conferencing.

On July 28, the Nagpur bench of Bombay High Court rejected the bail application of Saibaba, who had sought release for 45 days on medial grounds  to get treatment outside and meet his 74-year-old mother, who was suffering from cancer, in Hyderabad.

Saibabas wife Vasantha said in a statement that her mother-in-law Gokarakonda Suryavathi died at 1.40 p.m. on August 1 in Hyderabad.

Saibaba, who is wheelchair-bound with over 90% physical disability, is currently lodged in the Nagpur Central Jail.

His advocate Akash Sarode told PTI on August 2 that he informed the Nagpur jail authorities through e-mail on August 31 that the condition of Saibabas mother was serious and it was her wish to see her son.

The lawyer said he requested the jail authorities to arrange video-conferencing facility for Saibaba to see his ailing mother. However, he did not receive any reply from the jail authorities even after he called them up over phone.

After Saibabas mother died on Saturday, Mr. Sarode again called up the jail authorities to arrange for a phone call with the family, but he did not get any reply, the lawyer said.

Ms. Vasantha said Ms. Suryavathi was undergoing cancer treatment at NIMS, Hyderabad, and her health was progressively getting worse. She was desperately waiting to be reunited with her eldest son, Dr. G.N. Saibaba, currently languishing in prison under unfair charges, she said in the statement on August 1.

The court rejected his bail petition and parole, where he expressed his desire to see his mother in her final moments. Her son could not see her for the past four years since his incarceration, Saibabas wife said.

I feel extremely saddened by the loss of this kind and caring woman and even deeply disappointed in myself that I could not fulfill her final wish of letting her meet her son, she said, adding that the deceased had tested negative for coronavirus.

In March 2017, a sessions court in Maharashtras Gadchiroli district convicted Saibaba and four others, including a journalist and a Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) student, for Maoist links and engaging in activities amounting to waging war against the country.

The court held Saibaba and others guilty under the stringent Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA).

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