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Justice prevails. Dr Sudhakar Rao walks to freedom

Nearly three weeks after being in confinement in the Government Mental Hospital in Vizag, Dr Sudhakar Rao finally walked to freedom thanks to the relentless fight of his 90-year-old mother Kaveri Bai who moved heaven and earth for his discharge.

On Friday at 10 pm, Dr Sudhakar Rao was discharged from the mental hospital. Accompanied by his mother and relatives, Dr Sudhakar Rao was seen wearing a face mask and driven away in a white car. When mediapersons followed the car for a quick byte, the doctor responded, “I will talk to you later.”

Earlier in the day, the High Court on Friday ordered the YSRCP dispensation to immediately discharge Dr Sudhakar Rao from the Government Mental Hospital in Vizag. While ordering the government to discharge Dr Sudhakar Rao, the High Court had asked the doctor to fully cooperate with the CBI in its investigation process.

Dr Sudhakar Rao’s mother Kaveri Bai had fought a relentless battle against the state government and petitioned the High Court to shift her son from the Government Mental Hospital in Vizag fearing a threat to his life. Talking to mediapersons on Friday, Kaveri Bai pointed out that the state government conspired to keep her son in the mental hospital for another 15 days and hailed the HC directive to the Jagan sarkar to discharge Dr Sudhakar Rao.

On Thursday, Dr Sudhakar Rao’s 90-year-old mother filed a habeas corpus petition in the High Court demanding that the state government produce his son before the court in the next 24 hours. In the habeas corpus petition, Kaveri Bai had pointed out that her son was illegally detained in the mental hospital for more than three weeks without any valid reason. She had been running from pillar to post seeking justice and paid several visits to the mental hospital where Dr Sudhakar Roa has been languishing for the past three weeks. Dr Sudhakar Rao even wrote to the superintendent of the hospital that medicines used for treating the mentally unsound were being administered leading to severe side-effects and also petitioned the High Court through the letter.

The High Court had ordered a CBI probe into Dr Sudhakar Rao case which was criticised by YSRCP leader Aamachi Krishna Mohan who questioned the HC directive saying “Why order a CBI probe into a petty case”. Earlier, hearing a petition filed by Dr Sudhakar Rao, the High Court had asked the state government to clarify if the doctor was in the police or judicial custody. Further, the court raised serious apprehensions about the medical treatment being given to Dr Sudhakar Rao and directed the state government to ensure that the doctor gets best treatment.

It may be recalled that Dr Sudhakar Rao, who was working as civil surgeon in Narsipatnam government hospital, was suspended by the state government for raising voice of dissent over shortage of medical equipment in government hospitals. The Andhra Pradesh police had arrested him by tying a rope to his hands, dragged him on the streets and was beaten. Further, the AP police foisted false cases against Dr Sudhakar Rao under Sections 353 for assault, criminal force and obstruction of a public servant from discharging duty, Section 427 of IPC for causing mischief and Section 506 for criminal intimidation. . The CBI has booked cases against the police and government officials under Sections IPC 120B, 324, 343, 379 and 506. The CBI has also booked cases against Dr Sudhakar based on the complaint by constable V Venkataramana who stated that the doctor had assaulted the police and obstructed the police personnel from discharging their duty.

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Opinion : Dr Sudhakar could have been India’s George Floyd

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George Floyd, an African-American, was choked to death after a white American cop pinned him down. It just took less than 9 minutes to snuff out George Floyd’s life. Back home, Dr Sudhakar Rao was pinned down on the streets in Vizag much like George Floyd in the United States. Dr Sudhakar Rao’s hands were tied to a rope. He was dragged on the streets in the sweltering heat as if he was a dead dog. The police, as shown in the videos, were seen shooing away the bystanders who tried to help Dr Sudhakar, a Dalit. Over the three weeks, the visuals have dominated headlines in the local, national and even international media.

In the video, at least four cops encircled Dr Sudhakar, one was tying a rope to his hands, another was beating him with a baton even as the doctor repeatedly pleaded, “Nannu chempastaru”(They will kill me). The bystanders watched helplessly even as Dr Sudhakar was beaten. The similarities between both the events – George Floyd and Dr Sudhakar – in the two countries are striking as are the differences.

The murder of George Floyd at the hands of the US police has shaken the collective conscience of the Americans. The US has witnessed a massive civil unrest following the killing of George Floyd.

While the US has erupted into flames over the heinous murder by a white policeman of George Floyd in Minneapolis last week, people in India remained a mute spectator to the police atrocity against Dr Sudhakar whose only fault was to raise voice against the shortage of medical equipment. In the past few days, lakhs of Americans took to the streets and had bent on their knees to protest George Floyd’s killing; a symbolic imagery of his death. “Can’t breathe,” was the last words of George Floyd when a cop pinned him down with his feet on the black man’s neck. Americans took “Can’t breathe” as the slogan of protest. Their voices reverberated in the US. The wide-spread protests in the US over Floyd’s killing had even forced US President Donald Trump, as reported by the New York Times, to hide in a bunker.

In his statement to the CBI which is investigating the case as ordered by the High Court, Dr Sudhakar narrated the horrifying tale. “On May 16, I drove to a bank on in Anakapalli to deposit Rs 10 lakh towards clearing housing loan. I was stopped by a person at Kailsapuram Anjaneyaswamy temple. I noticed that two persons on a bike followed my car. I was stopped by two traffic constables. They snatched away my car keys, my wallet and Rs 10 lakh. Further, I have noticed that the cops have put three bottles of whiskey in my car. I was later beaten with lathis and they kicked me. I was taken to Four Town police station. After my mother arrived in the police station, the police shifted me to KGH hospital. After which, they declared that I am suffering from acute stress psychosis,” Dr Sudhakar stated.

Unfortunately, in India, a victim is being treated as if he is accused. He was not just pinned down and dragged on the streets, he was in fact sent to a mental asylum. For the last three weeks, the doctor is languishing the mental asylum in Vizag while his mother is running from pillar to post seeking justice. The High Court had ordered a CBI investigation, while YSRCP leader Aamachi Krishna Mohan questioned the wisdom of the court asking “Why a CBI probe into a petty case”. For Aamachi and the likes, dragging an individual does not amount to rights violation, does not amount to infringement of an individual’s right to speech and freedom of expression. It is a petty case when a doctor is beaten on the streets, treated worse than a dog, sent to an asylum. Further, the CBI took taking into account the police version had filed cases against Dr Sudhakar.

What is wrong with this society? People in India have failed to seize the opportunity to expose the excesses of the Andhra Pradesh government. They failed to unite the way Americans did to protest the injustice heaped on the black community. Why didn’t AP simmer with anger to stamp out the scourges of injustice against Dr Sudhakar. Have people in India lost their collective conscience?

– Srikanth

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Dr Sudhakar’s mother files habeas corpus in High Court

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Dr Sudhakar Rao’s 90-year-old mother Kaveri Bai on Thursday filed a habeas corpus petition in the High Court demanding that the state government produce his son before the court in the next 24 hours.

In the habeas corpus petition, Kaveri Bai pointed out that her son was illegal detained in the Government Mental Hospital in Vizag for more than three weeks without valid reason. A habeas corpus petition is filed under Article 32 of the Indian Constitution, through which the High Court can order the authorities to produce people before it to verify if they have been detained as per the procedures established by the law.

The High Court had already ordered a CBI probe into Dr Sudhakar Rao case. It may be recalled that Dr Sudhakar Rao who was working as civil surgeon in Narsipatnam government hospital was suspended by the state government for raising voice of dissent over shortage of medical equipment in government hospitals. The Andhra Pradesh police had arrested him by tying a rope to his hands, dragged him on the streets and was beaten. Further, the AP police foisted false cases against Dr Sudhakar Rao under Sections 353 for assault, criminal force and obstruction of a public servant from discharging duty, Section 427 of IPC for causing mischief and Section 506 for criminal intimidation. The CBI, which is investigating the case, has also booked cases against Dr Sudhakar based on the complaint by constable V Venkataramana who stated that the doctor had assaulted the police and obstructed the police personnel from discharging their duty. Videos clearly showed that Dr Sudhakar was pinned down on the street much like George Floyd in the United States who was pinned down to the ground by the cops there and died in less than 9 minutes. Dr Sudhkar could have been India’s George Floyd.

The AP police should explain how Dr Sudhakar obstructed the cops from discharging their duty when his hands were tied to a rope. On the contrary, Dr Sudkhakar was a helpless victim who was, as shown in the videos, was crying for help. The police, as shown in the videos, were seen shooing away the bystanders who tried to help Dr Sudhakar.

Clearly, his arrest and illegal confinement in a mental asylum is politically motivated. The Jagan government instead of protecting people’s rights to freedom of expression was creating an atmosphere of fear. “The state government is misusing its resources to target organisations and individuals who resisted its oppressive rule. The assault on my son is a grim pointer on how the state government was using the police to silence dissenters,” Kaveri Bai said.

Dr Sudhakar was a frontline warrior who risked his life every day to ensure that the rest of us don’t fall prey to this epidemic. Unfortunately, the same doctor was being harassed by the state government and his reputations ruined. Further, the state government is treating a victim as if he is the accused by foisting false cases against Dr Sudhakar. In the mental hospital, Dr Sudhakar wrote a letter stating that he feared threat to his life and that doctors were administering medicines that are used for treating mentally unsound leading to serious side-effects. The High Court asked the state government if Dr Sudkhar was in police or judicial custody

Earlier, condemning Dr Sudhakar’s confinement in the mental hospital, the Dalit leaders said is tragic, shameful, and an infringement on the right.

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CBI books cases against Dr Sudhakar Rao

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The Andhra Pradesh police seems to be hell-bent on trying to fix Dr Sudhakar Rao by implicating him under false charges.

The AP police levelled serious charges against Dr Sudhakar Rao of assault, criminal force and obstruction of a public servant from discharging duty. Deposing before the CBI which is investigating the case as ordered by the High Court, constable V Venkataramana stated that Dr Sudhakar Rao assaulted the police and obstructed the police personnel from discharging their duty. Based on the complaint, the CBI booked cases against Dr Sudhakar.

The Four Town police in Vizag had already booked Dr Sudhakar under Sections 353 for assault, criminal force and obstruction of a public servant from discharging duty, Section 427 of IPC for causing mischief and Section 506 for criminal intimidation. Based on this, the CBI has booked cases against Dr Sudhakar and uploaded the FIR on its website.

The CBI had already booked cases against the police and government officials under IPC 120B, 324, 343, 379 and 506 after the High Court ordered investigation into Dr Sudhakar’s case who had earlier been suspended for publicly criticizing the failure of the government in providing N95 masks to the doctors treating Covid-19 patients.

The High Court had directed the CBI to submit the investigation report within eight weeks and file a case against the Visakhapatnam police officers for manhandling Dr Sudhakar while taking him into custody. On May 16, videos of Dr Sudhakar being beaten, his hands tied to a rope, dragged on the streets by the Visakhapatnam police was widely circulated on social media.

Two months ago, Dr Sudhakar Rao, a civil Assistant surgeon, Area Hospital, Narsipatnam was suspended for speaking against the government.
The doctor had also petitioned the High Court fearing a threat to his life, that medicines used for treating mentally unsound people were administered leading to severe side-effects.

Hearing a petition filed by Dr Sudhakar Rao, the High Court on Friday had asked the state government to clarify if the doctor was in the police or judicial custody. Further, the court had raised serious apprehensions about the medical treatment being given to Dr Sudhakar and directed the state government to ensure that the doctor gets best of treatment.

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Dr Sudhakar Rao case: CBI books cases against police for criminal intimidation, illegal confinement, theft

In a significant development, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) team had arrived in Vishakaptanam on Saturday to begin its probe into Dr Sudhakar Rao’s case as directed by the High Court on May 22.

A week after the High Court directed, the CBI visited the Government Mental Hospital in Vishakaptanam to record the statement of Dr Sudhakar Rao who had been languishing in the asylum for more than two weeks since he was arrested on May 17. For nearly six hours, the CBI from Delhi questioned the doctors and the superintendent of the Government Mental Hospital. The CBI has booked strong cases under IPC 120B, 324, 343, 379 and 506. Sudhakar’s mother Kaveri Bai reached the Government Mental Hospital after knowing that the CBI team has arrived. However, she was not allowed inside the hosptial as the investigation was underway. the The cases were booked by CBI SP P Vimaladitya under the charges of criminial intimidation, theft and illegal confinement for more than three days. The cases were booked after taking the statement of Dr Sudhakar.

In his statement, Dr Sudhakar gave a detailed description of the events that unfolded on the day he was arrested. The doctor in his statement said, “On May 16, I drove to a bank on in Anakapalli to deposit Rs 10 lakh towards clearing housing loan. I was stopped by a person at Kailsapuram Anjaneyaswamy temple. I noticed that two persons on a bike followed my car. I was stopped by two traffic constables. They snatched away my car keys, my wallet and Rs 10 lakh. Further, I have noticed that the cops have put three bottles of whiskey in my car. I was later beaten with lathis and they kicked me. I was taken to Four Town police station. After my mother arrived in the police station, the police shifted me to KGH hospital. After which, they declared that I am suffering from acute stress psychosis.”

The doctor petition the High Court fearing a threat to his life, that medicines used for treating mentally unsound people were administered leading to severe side-effects.

Hearing a petition filed by Dr Sudhakar Rao, the High Court on Friday had asked the state government to clarify if the doctor was in the police or judicial custody. Further, the court raised serious apprehensions about the medical treatment being given to Dr Sudhakar Rao and directed the state government to ensure that the doctor gets best of treatment. To this, the government assured the court that Dr Sudhakar Rao will be given good care and treatment. The government counsel sought two days time to submit a detailed report. “What is the guarantee that there won’t be any problem to the doctor’s health in these two days,” the court questioned the state counsel.

It may be recalled that Dr Sudhakar Rao was fist suspended as civil surgeon from the Narsipatnam government hospital after he raised his voice against shortage of medical equipment. In a move that is seen as vendetta, the doctor was arrested on charges of drunk driving. He was dragged on the streets, his shirt removed, his both hands tied with a rope while a constable repeatedly delivered blows with his lathi. Following this, the High Court had ordered a CBI probe into police excesses. The HC asked the CBI to probe and file the investigation report within eight weeks and book cases against Visakhapatnam police officers who allegedly used excessive force while taking Dr. Sudhakar into custody.

On Saturday, Dr Sudhakar Rao’s mother Kaveri Rao visited the Government Mental Hospital and expressed fears that her son’s life was at a grave risk. She demanded that her son be shifted to another hospital. Kaveri Bai was not allowed inside the hospital as the CBI investigation was underway. Lashing out at the state government for illegal confinement of her son in a mental hospital, Kaveri Rao said it is unfortunate that the ruling dispensation has attributed political motives to her son for raising his voice against the shortage of medical equipment in government hospitals. She sighed a sigh of relief after the CBI has begun its probe and booked cases against all those who are involved in the case under IPC Sections 120B, 324, 343, 379 and 506.

What do the Sections attract?

Section 120B was filed against all those party to a criminal conspiracy. Section 120B is punishable with death, imprisonment for life or rigorous imprisonment for a term of two years or upwards. While Section 324 defines voluntarily causing hurt by dangerous weapons or means, while Section 343 was filed for wrongful confinement for three or more days. Such wrongful confinement of any person for three days, or more, shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to two years, or with fine, or with both.
Section 379 was filed for offence of theft. Under the Section, whoever commits theft shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to three years, or with both. Section 503 deals with criminal intimidation. Whoever threatens another with any injury to the person, reputation or property, or to the person or reputation of any one in whom that person is interested, with intent to cause alarm to that person.

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Dr Sudhakar Rao in police or judicial custody? HC asks AP

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After receiving a hard knock on the knuckles of the AP government in Nimmagadda Ramesh Kumar, the Jagan government received another blow in Dr Sudhakar Rao’s case.

Hearing a petition filed by Dr Sudhakar Rao who is confined to the government mental hospital in Vizag, the High Court on Friday asked the state government to clarify if the doctor was in the police or judicial custody. Further, the court raised serious apprehensions about the medical treatment being given to Dr Sudhakar Rao and directed the state government to ensure that the doctor gets best of treatment. To this, the government assured the court that Dr Sudhakar Rao will be given good care and treatment. The government counsel sought two days time to submit a detailed report. “What is the guarantee that there won’t be any problem to the doctor’s health in these two days,” the court questioned the state counsel.

The court was hearing a petition filed by Dr Sudhakar Rao who moved the High Court appealing the court to give a directive to the state government to shift him to another hospital. In the petition, Dr Sudhakar Rao said doctors at the mental hospital in Vizag were administering wrong medicines, medicines that are used to treat insane patient. He also listed the medicines that were being administered including Calmpose and Haloperidol. Haloperidol is an antipsychotic medicine that is used to treat schizophrenia. He said the medicines have caused serious side-effects. The High Court had already directed the CBI to probe the highhandedness of the police.

Dr Sudhakar Rao was suspended as civil surgeon from the Narsipatnam government hospital. In a move that is seen as vendetta, the doctor was arrested on charges of drunk driving. He was dragged on the streets, his shirt removed, his both hands tied with a rope while a constable repeatedly delivered blows with his lathi.

On Friday, Dr Sudhakar Rao’s mother Kaveri Rao visited the Government Mental Hospital and expressed fears that her son’s life was at a grave risk. She demanded that her son be shifted to another hospital. Lashing out at the state government for illegal confinement of her son in a mental hospital, Kaveri Rao said it is unfortunate that the ruling dispensation has attributed political motives to her son for raising his voice against the shortage of medical equipment in government hospitals.

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Kaveri Rao, relatives record Dr Sudhakar Rao’s statement

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Dr Sudhakar Rao’s mother Kaveri Rao who visited the Government Mental Hospital on Friday expressed her anguish and fears that her son’s life is at a grave risk. She once again demanded that her son be shifted to another hospital.

Lashing out at the state government for illegal confinement of her son in a mental hospital, Kaveri Rao said it is unfortunate that the ruling dispensation has attributed political motives to her son for raising his voice against the shortage of medical equipment in government hospitals.

At a press briefing, Kaveri Rao said her son had no mental health issues, yet the state government had confined him in a mental asylum for more than two weeks. “I have no faith in this government which is resorting to arm-twisting tactics by way of vendetta. My son is a reputed doctor. He has been abused and constantly being threatened. Dr Ram Reddy of the Vizag mental hospital is instigating my son and abusing him. He is under sever stress. How many more days will my son be confined to the mental hospital?”

Dr Sudhakar Rao’s well-wishers who accompanied Kaveri Rao on Friday recorded the statement of the suspended civil surgeon. As per the voice record statement, Dr Sudhakar Rao repeatedly was saying that he feared that there is a threat to his life and sought protection. The voice record, Kaveri Rao said, will be produced before the High Court.

On Thursday, Dr Sudhakar Rao moved the High Court. In a petition, the Civil Surgeon of Narsipatnam government hospital who was suspended requested the court to give a directive to the state government to shift him to another hospital.

In the petition, Dr Sudhakar Rao said wrong medicines were being administered leading to serious side-effects. Dr Sudhakar noted that doctors at the mental hospital were administering wrong medicines, medicines that are used to treat insane patient. He also listed the medicines that were being administered including Calmpose and Haloperidol. Haloperidol is an antipsychotic medicine that is used to treat schizophrenia. He said the medicines have caused serious side-effects. The High Court had already directed the CBI to probe the highhandedness of the police.

Dr Sudhakar Rao was dragged on the streets, his shirt removed, his both hands tied with a rope while a constable repeatedly delivered blows with his lathi under the pretext that he was arrested on charges of drunk driving.

However, YSRCP leader and former Chirala MLA Amanchi Krishna Mohan remarked that it was a petty case, one that does not warrant a CBI investigation. The YSRCP leader had found fault with the High Court for directing the country’s premier investigating agency to probe the police highhandedness against Dr Sudhakar Rao. The YSRCP leader further commented that he would spearheaded an agitation against the court’s directive but for the lockdown. The High Court issued contempt notice against the YSRCP leader for his disparaging remarks.

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Dr Sudhakar Rao moves High Court

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Dr Sudhakar Rao, who was suspended by the Jagan government for raising his voice against the shortage of medical equipment and later confined to mental hospital, on Thursday moved the High Court.

The Civil Surgeon of Narsipatnam government hospital on Thursday filed a petition requesting that he be shifted to another hospital. In the petition, Dr Sudhakar Rao said wrong medicines were being administered leading to serious side-effects. In the pettion, Dr Sudhakar listed the medicines that were being administered including Calmpose and Haloperidol. Haloperidol is an antipsychotic medicine that is used to treat schizophrenia. He said the medicines have caused serious side-effects.

Haloperidol is also used to control motor and speech tics in people with Tourette’s syndrome. Calmpose is used in the treatment of short-term anxiety. It can also be used to treat acute alcohol withdrawal, to relieve muscle spasm and as adjunctive therapy for seizures. He also wrote a letter to the superintendent of the government mental hosptial on Wednesday in this regard.

The High Court is likely to take up hearing on the case tommorrow. The High Court had already directed the CBI to probe the highhandedness of the police. On Wednesday, TV channels showed the visuals of Dr Sudhakar Rao in the government mental hospital. The effects of the medicines were clearly visible on his lips, as per the visuals.

Dr Sudhakar Rao has been confined in the government mental hospital since the last two weeks without conducting any tests to determine if he was mentally unsound. After suspending the doctor, the police dragged him on the streets, tied him up to a rope under the pretext that he was caught drunk driving.

On Wednesday, Dr Sudhakar Rao’s relatives including his mother Kaveri Rao met the doctor at the mental hospital. Addressing the media on Wednesday after meeting his son at the government mental hospital in Vizag, Kaveri Rao feared that there was a threat to his life and he should be immediately shifted to another hospital. Further, Kaveri Rao asked the state government to explain how his son, a doctor with several years of experience, has turned insane just after Dr Sudhakar Rao raised his voice against shortage of medical equipment in government hospitals.

“Kindly save my son. His health has deteriorated since he was admitted to the mental hospital. He has lost weight. The doctors at the mental hospital are administering wrong medicines, medicines that are used to treat insane patients. The government is making serious attempts to browbeat my son by weakening him emotionally and physically,” this is the anguish Dr Sudhakar Rao’s 90-year-old mother Kaveri Rao expressed her anguish.

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Wrong medicines administered, writes Dr Sudhakar Rao

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Expressing serious concern over his confinement in Vizag government mental hospital, Dr Sudhakar Rao on Wednesday has written a letter to the superintendent of the hospital requesting that he be shifted to another hospital.

In the letter, Dr Sudhakar Rao said wrong medicines were being administered leading to serious side-effects. TV channels showed the latest visuals of Dr Sudhakar Rao in the government mental hospital. The effects of the medicines were clearly visible on his lips, as per the visuals.

In the letter, Dr Sudhakar also listed the medicines that were being administered including Calmpose and Haloperidol. Haloperidol is an antipsychotic medicine that is used to treat schizophrenia. Haloperidol is also used to control motor and speech tics in people with Tourette’s syndrome. Calmpose is used in the treatment of short-term anxiety. It can also be used to treat acute alcohol withdrawal, to relieve muscle spasm and as adjunctive therapy for seizures. Side effects of this medicine include fatigue, confusion, tremor, double vision, insomnia, dry mouth, and headache. It may cause dizziness and sleepiness.

The doctor said it was due to the side-effects of the medicines that were being administered in the government mental hospital that his lips were swollen and turned pinkish. Further, Dr Sudhakar Rao pointed out that he was straight away admitted in the government mental hospital without even conducting breath analyzer test and other medical examinations to detect the level of alcohol in blood and urine. It may be noted that Dr Sudhakar Rao was arrested for drunk driving, he was dragged on the streets, his hands tied to a rope and a police constable was seen beating him with a lathi. This is a grave human rights violation.

As per the law, drivers are initially tested for alcohol consumption with breath analyzers. In addition, blood and urine samples are taken to further corroborate the breath analyser tests. Dr Sudhakar Rao said no medical examinations were conducted to determine whether he was drunk or not.

Dr Sudhakar Rao has been confined in the government mental hospital since the last two weeks without conducting any tests to determine if he was mentally unsound. On Wednesday, Dr Sudhakar Rao’s relatives including his mother Kaveri Rao met the doctor at the mental hospital. Kaveri Rao was aghast at the conditions in the hospital. He was confined in a room which was most unhygienic.

Kindly save my son, his life is in grave danger: Sudhakar Rao’s mother Kaveri

“Kindly save my son. His health has deteriorated since he was admitted to the mental hospital. He has lost weight. The doctors at the mental hospital are administering wrong medicines, medicines that are used to treat insane patients. The government is making serious attempts to browbeat my son by weakening him emotionally and physically,” this is the anguish of Dr Sudhakar Rao’s 90-year-old mother Kaveri Rao.

Addressing the media on Wednesday after meeting his son at the government mental hospital in Vizag, Kaveri Rao feared that there was a threat to his life and he should be immediately shifted to another hospital. Further, Kaveri Rao asked the state government to explain how his son, a doctor with several years of experience, has turned insane just after Dr Sudhakar Rao raised his voice against shortage of medical equipment in government hospitals. “This is political vendetta. My son performed surgery in the morning, in the evening he met Ayanna Patrudu. Soon after meeting Ayyanna Patrudu, my son was suspended,” Kaveri Rao pointed out. “My son is confined in a room which was most unhygienic,” she said.

Kaveri Rao said if her son was not shifted immediately from the government mental hospital, feared that his son could be killed. Further, Kaveri Rao said Dr Ram Reddy, a doctor who is attending to Dr Sudhakar Rao at the government mental hospital, was not giving proper replies when asked about the medicines that were being administered to her son. She said the medicines were being secretly administered with the strips of the tablets removed. “They are doing this so that the names of the tablets won’t be known. But since my son is a doctor himself knows the medicines that are being administered,” a visibly upset Kaveri Rao said.

She said attempts were being made to dilute the case by offering the job at the Narsipatnam government hospital back to her son. “We do not need the job. This is of least importance to us. The dignity of my son should be restored. More importantly, his life should be saved first by shifting him to another hospital. He was dragged on the streets like a dog and beaten. All the people who are involved in the entire incident should be severely punished. They should be sent to jail,” she said. Further, she noted that the Jagan government is planning to move the Supreme Court challenging the High Court’s directive ordering CBI probe into the entire incident.

Kaveri Rao said she will submit the letter written by her son before the High Court to seek justice. Expressing serious concern over his confinement in Vizag government mental hospital, Dr Sudhakar Rao on Wednesday has written a letter to the superintendent of the hospital requesting that he be shifted to another hospital.

Earlier, addressing Mahanadu via Zoom App on Wednesday, TDP president and former chief minister N Chandrababu Naidu said the YSRCP government treated the doctor with vengeance for criticising it over not supplying masks to the doctors. He said the way senior doctor was dragged on to streets and beaten by the police which was a grim pointer to rights violations in Andhra Pradesh. “Dr Sudhakar Rao was suspended for raising voice against the shortage of masks and other medical equipment like PPEs in government hospitals. He was detained by the police under the pretext that he caused nuisance. He was sent to Government Hospital for Mental Health. Is this how the government treats a doctor who was the frontline warrior in the fight against Covid,” Naidu questioned. Earlier, the Indian Medical Association (IMA) has lodged a protest with the Andhra Pradesh government over the police highhandedness against Dr Sudhakar.

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HC orders CBI probe into Dr Sudhakar case; I hope courts will restore dignity of my son: Kaveri Rao

The Andhra Pradesh High Court on Friday directed the CBI to probe into the high-handed behaviour of the police against Narsipatnam area hospital civil assistant surgeon Sudhakar Rao.

Further, the High Court directed the CBI to register a case against the Vishakaptanam police for physically assaulting the doctor who was suspended by the Jagan government in April after he raised voice of dissent over shortage of PPEs (Personal Protective Equipment).

The High Court also took a serious note of a magisterial probe report that found physical injuries on the doctor after he was beaten up by the police and wondered why a report submitted by the state government did not make any mention of injuries.

Earlier, the High Court directed the Visakhapatnam sessions judge to record the statement of a suspended government doctor allegedly manhandled by the police in full public view in Visakhapatnam last week.

It may be recalled that the ]senior doctor from the Narsipatnam Area Hospital was recently detained by the police for allegedly causing nuisance on a main road in Visakhapatnam. The doctor, according to the police, created nuisance in an inebriated condition. Vidoes that went viral showed a barechested Dr Sudhakar Rao lying on down on the road, the police tying his hands up even as one constable hits him with a lathi. The police later bundled the doctor into an auto. He was later shifted to King George Hospital, where doctors found him in an inebriated condition. He was subsequently referred to Government Hospital for Mental Health, where he was under treatment for acute and transient psychosis. The police booked the doctor under Sections 353 (Assault or criminal force to deter public servant from discharge of his duty) and 427 (Mischief causing damage to the amount of Rs 50).
Meanwhile, Sudhakar Rao’s mother Kaveri Rao condemned the police action and said his son had no mental health issues. She hailed the High Court verdict of CBI probe into the incident and hoped that justice will prevail. “I have no faith in the AP police. The police kicked him and treated him in most inhumane manner. The way he was taken into custody by tying his hands with a rope clearly showed that he was targeted because he raised his voice against the shortage of PPEs. He faced both physical and verbal abuses since the day he raised the issue of shortage of medical equipment. I have total faith in the justice system. I hope the courts will restore the dignity and honour of my son,” Kaveri Rao said on Friday.

The video clips of police tying the doctor’s hands behind him, dragging and manhandling him triggered outrage with the opposition parties, doctors’ associations and Dalit groups condemning the police action. TDP president and former chief minister N Chandrababu Naidu alleged that the YSRCP government treated the doctor with vengeance for criticising it over not supplying masks to the doctors. However, the YSRCP alleged that the doctor was ‘in cahoots’ with the TDP to malign the government.

Telugu360 is always open for the best and bright journalists. If you are interested in full-time or freelance, email us at Krishna@telugu360.com.

HC directs Vizag judge to record suspended doctor’s statement

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The Andhra Pradesh High Court on Wednesday directed the Visakhapatnam sessions judge to record the statement of a suspended government doctor allegedly manhandled by the police in full public view in Visakhapatnam last week.

The High Court directed the sessions judge to personally visit the Government Hospital for Mental Health where Dr K. Sudhakar Rao is admitted and record his statement.

The court issued orders that the doctor’s statement be submitted to it by Thursday evening.

The court passed the orders on a petition seeking a probe into the doctor’s manhandling, arrest and admission to a mental hospital.

Sudhakar Rao, civil assistant surgeon, Area Hospital, Narsipatnam, who was suspended two months ago after he publicly criticised the government for failing to provide N95 masks to the doctors treating Covid-19 patients, was arrested by the police in Visakhapatnam on May 16 for allegedly creating nuisance on the road at Akkayapalem.

The policemen allegedly manhandled the doctor, who was seen shirtless to the waist, dragged him and bundled him into an autorickshaw. He was shifted to King George Hospital, where doctors found him in an inebriated condition. He was subsequently referred to Government Hospital for Mental Health, where he was under treatment for acute and transient psychosis.

The police booked the doctor under the Indian Penal Code sections 353 (Assault or criminal force to deter public servant from discharge of his duty) and 427 (Mischief causing damage to the amount of Rs 50).

Police said the doctor behaved rudely with a traffic head constable, snatched his mobile phone and threw it away. He allegedly behaved aggressively with an autorickshaw driver and others and caused a traffic jam.

Police claimed that as the doctor could have endangered his own life, he was taken into custody and since he was in an inebriated condition, he was shifted to KGH for an alcohol test.

The video clips of police tying the doctor’s hands behind him, dragging and manhandling him triggered outrage with the opposition parties, doctors’ associations and Dalit groups condemning the police action.

Former chief minister and leader of opposition N. Chandrababu Naidu alleged that the YSR Congress Party government treated the doctor with vengeance for criticising it over not supplying masks to the doctors.

Meanwhile, the Indian Medical Association (IMA) has lodged a protest with the Andhra Pradesh government over the police inappropriately handling Dr Sudhakar, an anesthetist.

“There were certainly civilised ways of handling the situation by a civilian government. That he was under suspension for allegedly raising safety issues in the hospital was all the more reason for sensitive handling of the issue,” the IMA headquarters said in a letter to Chief Minister Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy.

The association made it clear that it doesn’t hold a brief for Dr Sudhakar uttering unparliamentary words against the chief minister. “Such public behaviour is unacceptable and a conscientious apology is in order,” it said

“In the meantime the way a member of the medical profession was handled in public is very disturbing. It has hurt the doctors across the nation,” the IMA added.

IMA wrote that it expects a fair investigation into the incident and his suspension and demanded punishment for the erring police officials.

IMA noted that its Andhra Pradesh branch rose to the occasion in defending the dignity of the doctor and looking after his health. It appended with its letter the interim report of the fact finding committee of IMA, AP.

The fact finding committee demanded that charges against Dr Sudhakar must be withdrawn and concurrently, he must apologise for using foul language against the chief ministers of both the Telugu states.

The panel opined that the police brutality was a sad fallout of his suspension from service for certain comments of his at that time.

It found that the suspension affected the mental health of Sudhakar and caused agony to his family.

Telugu360 is always open for the best and bright journalists. If you are interested in full-time or freelance, email us at Krishna@telugu360.com.

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