Narmada Bachao Andolan (NBA) activists have accused the Madhya Pradesh state government of trying to drive a wedge among them by admitting its leader Medha Patkar in an upscale private hospital while moving other protesters to government hospitals.
Patkar and other protesters were forcibly shifted from her indefinite fast venue at Chikhlada in Dhar district on Monday night by police after a lathicharge on NBA activists. She was hospitalised more than 150 kilometers away to Bombay Hospital, Indore. They were protesting against alleged poor rehabilitation of Sardar Sarovar Project (SSP)-affected families in four districts of Madhya Pradesh – Dhar, Barwani, Alirajpur and Khargone.
Eleven other activists who had also been observing an indefinite fast with Patkar since July 27 were taken by police and admitted to district hospital in Dhar and MY Hospital in Indore.
“CM says he was concerned about health of Medha Patkar ji. Was he not concerned about other activists health who were also on indefinite fast? Whereas Medhaji has been admitted to Bombay hospital, Indore other activists have been dumped in the district hospital where there are hardly any facility,” NBA activist Rahul Yadav told Hindustan Times.
Bombay hospital is a private super speciality hospital in Indore.
“The state government is trying to drive a wedge among the activists by taking Medha ji to a private hospital and others in government hospitals. Why this discrimination by the government in selecting different hospitals for treatment? Medhaji herself has disapproved this discrimination,” said another NBA activist C Bhagirath.
But commissioner, Indore, Sanjay Dubey refuted charges of any discrimination.
He told HT that the activists were admitted to different hospitals given different levels of their conditions and doctors’ advice. All possible treatment was being provided to each of the activists.
In a message late night chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan said, “I am a sensitive person. Medha Patkar and her colleagues have been admitted to a hospital on doctors’ advice, not arrested. Her condition was worrisome due to high ketone and sugar (level). We are for her good health and long life.”
There are also differing versions on Medha Patkar’s fast.
NBA activists claim Patkar continues to observe fast.
However, commissioner Dubey said she was on an intravenous drip and given food also. “Her condition is improving and she is cooperating with doctors,” he added.
Meanwhile, other NBA activists have started observing fast at Chikhlada, the organisation said.