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The Delhi High Court on Thursday directed the AIIMS in Delhi to constitute a medical board to examine and treat former union minister P Chidambaram who has been in custody since August 21 in connection with the INX Media case.

The court asked the premier medical institution that the board should comprise Dr Nageshwar Reddy, the family doctor of Chidambaram from Hyderabad for the Congress leader’s treatment there. The HC asked the board to submit its report before it by Friday, also indicating whether Chidambaram should be shifted to more sterile environment in the hospital. The board will sit tonight to deliberate on these issues.

Chidambaram had on Wednesday moved the Delhi High Court seeking interim bail in the INX Media case filed by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) on health grounds. Chidambaram has sought interim bail stating that that he needs to consult his regular doctors at the Asian Institute of Gastroenterology, Hyderabad who have been treating him for sometime.

Today Sr. Adv Kapil Sibal told the Delhi High Court that the former Minister is suffering from Crohn’s disease and if he is not treated urgently, it may turn cancerous. The interim bail would allow him to travel to Hyderabad for treatment at the hands of the family doctor Dr Nageshwar Reddy.

Justice Suresh Kumar Kait refused, saying he can be treated at AIIMS, thus agreeing with the Solicitor General Tushar Mehta.

Senior Counsel Abhishek Manu Singhvi also appearing for Chidambaram informed the court that Chidambaram’s weight has gone down drastically  from 73.5 kgs to 66 kgs while he’s been in custody.

Chidambaram was taken to All India Institute of Medical Sciences in New Delhi on Monday after he complained of stomach ache and other related issues, and was discharged after treatment. Sources said Chidambaram was taken to the Ram Manohar Lohia in the morning and was shifted to the All India Institute of Medical Sciences later in the evening.  Chidambaram complained of illness and pain in the stomach, agencies reported , adding that he was treated for gastrointestinal-related problems. He was brought to the hospital around 5.40 pm and was discharged around 7 pm. He was examined by a team of doctors they said. The doctors remained tight-lipped about the health issues he faced. While those close to Chidambaram said ‘his condition is not good’ as he is having ‘some issues’, the ED sources claimed “there was nothing serious” with the former finance minister.

But his plea for bail was strongly opposed by the ED. The CBI Court had therefore turned down the request and stated that in case of any medical need, he would be taken to AIIMS.

—India Legal Bureau

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