Newspapers in Jharkhand have gone agog with the police version of the raid in Hazaribagh Central Jail on October 9, some of them also carrying a photograph of the raid showing Narayan Sanyal.
On the other hand, at least 30 prisoners in Hazaribagh Central Jail went on a fast for the full day on October 10 in protest against the planting of the mobile by the police to claim that it was recovered from Narayan Sanyal.
Early in the morning, on the 9th of October, there were 3 consecutive search operations among the barracks launched with the consent of the jail authorities. When no illegal recovery was made, the police went once again to Narayan Sanyal\\\’s cell and thrust a mobile in his pocket. According to sources, Narayan Sanyal and the prisoners in neighbouring cells who were witness to this fake recovery operation were all aghast and astounded that when the police official took out his hand from the pocket there was a mobile which none of them had ever seen before.
With their day long fast, the protesting prisoners also gave a memorandum to the IG (Prisons) of Jharkhand to have a judicial inquiry conducted into this fake raid by policemen. Copies of this memorandum were marked for the Chief Justice of Jharkhand and the NHRC. The memorandum was to be forwarded by the Jail Superintendent to these authorities.
It appears that this is a deliberate action by the Jharkhand Police to block the release on bail of the oldest surviving Maoist leader in the country. Narayan Sanyal is known to be about 3 years older than Sushil Roy who is battling with cancer at the AIIMS.
Mr Sanyal has only 3 cases against him, in all of which he has been granted bail. The fake raid was launched pat on the day after the receipt of an order from a Giridih court to release Narayan Sanyal on bail in his only case in Jharkhand. The Jail authorities had already written to the district police chief to provide the necessary guard to transport Sanyal from Hazaribagh to Khammam in Andhra Pradesh, where a court has sent a production warrant for him.
Far from providing the guard as per their duty, the Hazaribagh police chief seems to have engineered this fake raid at the behest of the higher-ups, ostensibly to make out a case for continuing the undertrial political prisoner;s detention in Jharkhand. It is feared that this could have been done to prepare the ground either for a fresh case or for a move to invoke a prevention detention measure through the Jharkhand-specific Crime Control Act, 2000 or the National Security Act, 1980.
Meanwhile, the CDRO (Coordination of Democratic Rights Organisations) has come out to condemn this consipratorial police action. What is needed is a team of lawyers/activists/well wishers to go and visit Narayan Sanyal and some other prisoners at Hazaribagh to bring out the hidden aspects of this unfortunate episode.