On Thursday morning, JJ hospital turned into a fortress, with armed policemen taking position. While patients and doctors at the hospital initially believed it was a mock drill, they later found out that the bandobast was to ensure the safety of one of the most talked about terrorists, Abu Jundal, handler of Ajmal Qasab, who is presently on a hunger strike at Arthur Road Jail.
A doctor attached to the hospital from the medicine department confirmed that Jundal was brought in for carrying out a detailed investigation, as his ketone levels were higher and that they were instructed to force feed him, to ensure that his condition did not worsen. He was taken back to jail by afternoon, and was treated as on OPD basis, like another criminal.
While T P Lahane, dean of Grant Medical College and JJ Group of hospitals, who was busy conducting surgeries on his patients in the Ophthalmology building, said, “I am in the midst of the surgery since morning and have another 23 patients more waiting. You can check with the superintendent of the hospital.”
When contacted, Superintendent Dr N B Bavdekar confirmed to mid-day that Jundal was indeed brought to the hospital for conducting few tests as his ketone levels were higher, which indicates that he was indeed starving.
The doctor added, “We had to conduct an ultra sonography to check his kidney functioning and to check the creatinine level, for which blood has been taken, and all his test reports are normal.”
When asked if he was being force fed, the doctor replied in negative stating that Jundal has been taking oral liquids including Glucon D, in the prison, due to which his vital parameters are functioning normally so far.
Jundal has been on hunger strike for more then two weeks now, and his recent blood and urine report reveals the presence of ketones. He is presently lodged in the same special high security cell, where Qasab was lodged.
On August 5, Jundal’s advocate, Asif Naqvi had filed an application before the Special MCOCA court saying Jundal had gone on a hunger strike, and atrocities were being committed against him by jail authorities, who keep telling him to accept his guilt.
Jundal, who was nabbed in Saudi Arabia and deported to India in 2012, is accused of a central role in the 26/11 attacks and waging war against India. Investigators claim audio recordings establish that Jundal was based in a control room in Pakistan during 26/11, passing instructions on the phone to the terrorists who had fanned out across Mumbai with grenades and machine guns, killing 166 people in 2008.
What are ketones?
Ketones are substances that are made when the body breaks down fat for energy. Ketones indicate fasting. Normally, the body gets the energy it needs from carbohydrates in the diet. But stored fat is broken down and ketones are made if the diet does not contain enough carbohydrates to supply the body with sugar (glucose) for energy, or if the body can’t use blood sugar (glucose) properly.