The Delhi High Court on Wednesday asked Tihar Jail authorities to produce medical records of Vikas Yadav, serving life term along with two others in the Nitish Katara murder case, on a plea that he had visited hospitals 87 times by misusing his financial and political influence.
"The jail superintendent is hereby directed to produce all the relevant medical records of convict Vikas Yadav" a bench of justices Gita Mittal and V K Shali said while posting the matter for hearing on Thursday.
"Jail Superintendent is also directed to file a report as to whether other inmates have also been permitted to visit hospitals like Vikas Yadav," it said.
The court's order came on the petition of Nilam Katara, mother of the victim, seeking a direction to the jail authorities and All India Institute of Medical Sciences to produce entire record relating to Yadav's ailments and his visits to the premier hospital.
The court, meanwhile, also issued notices to Delhi Police and others on some cross appeals against the order of trial court awarding life imprisonment to Vikas Yadav, son of controversial Uttar Pradesh politician D P Yadav, and his cousin Vishal Yadav in 2008.
The lower court has also awarded similar punishment to third accused Sukhdev Pehalwan who was tried separately as he had absconded during the trial of Yadav in the case.
While the convicts had moved the high court seeking reversal of the trial court's findings in the case, the Delhi Police and Nilam Katara had filed appeal for award of death penalty for them on the ground that the offence fell under the 'rarest of rare' category.
The court has fixed the cross appeals for hearing on March 22.
During the hearing, the counsel for Nilam Katara said, "Ever since Vikas was convicted and sentenced to life, he has made 87 visits to AIIMS and other hospitals besides the fact that there was no court order to refer him to AIIMS. It is pertinent to state that referral hospitals for the under trials and convicts are DDU and LNJP. These hospitals are well equipped".
Katara, in her petition, has referred to the responses received from Tihar Jail authorities under the RTI on the issue.
She has sought directions from the court so that the convict "may not misuse the financial and political influence with impunity to get the privilege of medical treatment at premiere hospitals like AIIMS for the treatment of diseases like tuberculosis".
Nitish Katara, a business executive, was abducted from a marriage party in Ghaziabad on the intervening night of February 16-17, 2002 and was later killed by the convicts for his alleged intimacy with Bharti Yadav, sister of Vikas Yadav.