Friends of Fernandes worried about his health

Seek a panel of doctors and friends to take charge of him

GN Bureau | February 17, 2010


File photo of George Fernandes
File photo of George Fernandes

Long-time friends and political associates of socialist leader George Fernades are a worried lot. They are concerned about his treatment and well-being as his estranged wife Leila and son Sean have taken complete charge of him.

They have appealed that an independent panel, comprising of doctors familiar with Fernandes' condition and long-time associates, should be set up to take his care.

The signatories include prominent leaders like Farooq Abdullah, Jaswant Singh, former chief justice of India M N Venkatachalaiah, businessmen Rahul Bajaj and Ravi Ruia. A note is being circulated by former ambassador and minister Ajay Singh.

The letter says: "We, the long time friends of George Fernandes, are deeply distressed at the events of the last few weeks, which diminish this image of a great man who, due to a debilitating illness, is unable to defend himself or express himself publicly.

" We are also making this public statement to convey our deep concern for the well being, health and care of our friend George.

"We understand he is being moved from place to place and decisions on his well-being are being suddenly and arbitrarily taken by people who are not familiar with the particular aspects, past progress and treatment of his ailments.

"This is bound to have a severe adverse impact on his state of mind and body. A panel of suitable people comprising of his familiar doctors at AIIMS and his long time colleagues and care givers, including the immediate and extended family, should be constituted through a legal process to ensure a stable atmosphere for him to feel comfortable and at ease."

Here we reproduce the letter forwarded by Ajay Singh:

Ajay Singh
Former Union Minister and
Ambassador
16th February 2010

Dear Friends,
      I am forwarding an Urgent Appeal / Statement issued jointly by some longtime friends and well wishers of Shri George Fernandes. The contents of the accompanying Appeal/ Statement are self explanatory.
      Due to shortage of time and the urgency of the attending circumstances, the Appeal/ Statement could not be physically signed by the issuers. However, I have obtained the consent of all the individuals enlisted as the issuers of the same, by e-mail, on the telephone and in private conversation. I take full responsibility of the fact that the accompanying Appeal/ Statement has been issued with the full consent, agreement and endorsement of all the persons enlisted as the issuers of the same.
      May I, keeping in mind the urgency and the importance of the matter, request you to publish it prominently in your publication?
 
Yours truly
Ajay Singh
178, Sector-17A, Gurgaon-122001 (Haryana)
Telephone No. - +919910659123
E-mail- ajaysinghe@gmail.com

URGENT APPEAL / STATEMENT REGARDING GEORGE FERNANDES, M.P. (RAJYA SABHA)
16th February 2010

George Fernandes is one of the most influential of India’s political leaders of the last four decades. His entire life was dedicated to fight tyranny, oppression, corruption, and for the upliftment of deprived sections of our society. His battles for equality, democracy, a free media, human rights, and against all forms of injustice are well known.

We, the long time friends of George Fernandes, are deeply distressed at the events of the last few weeks, which diminish this image of a great man who, due to a debilitating illness, is unable to defend himself or express himself publicly.

We are also making this public statement to convey our deep concern for the well being, health and care of our friend George. We understand he is being moved from place to place and decisions on his well-being are being suddenly and arbitrarily taken by people who are not familiar with the particular aspects, past progress and treatment of his ailments. This is bound to have a severe adverse impact on his state of mind and
body. A panel of suitable people comprising of his familiar doctors at AIIMS and his long time colleagues and care givers, including the immediate and extended family, should be constituted through a legal process to ensure a stable atmosphere for him to feel comfortable and at ease.

All unseemly speculation and discussion being carried out in public view about his assets and relationships undermine the values that our friend George stands for.

It is our duty as his friends and admirers to ensure him his dignity and to demand respect for what he has done and the choices he has made over
so many years.

Issued by
1. Justice MN Venkatachaliah  -  Former Chief  Justice Supreme Court of India, former Chairman  Human Rights Commission, Padma Vibhushan  Awardee. 
2. Farooq Abdullah - Union Minister of New and  Renewable Energy, former Chief Minister Jammu  and Kashmir
3. Jaswant Singh    - Member of Parliament, former  Finance Minister and Defence Minister
4. Viren J. Shah -  Former Governor West Bengal  and  arrested in the Baroda Dynamite Case with  George  Fernandes, former Member of  Parliament.
5. Kamal Morarka - Chairman Gannon Dunkerley  Group, former Member of Parliament (Rajya  Sabha) and former Minister of State
6. UR Ananthamurthy  - Renowned Kannada  writer,  Jnanpith awardee, socialist, Padma  Bhushan  awardee
7. RV Pandit    -  Philanthrophist, film producer,  publisher.
8. Rahul Bajaj   - Chairman Bajaj Group, Member  of  Parliament ( Rajya Sabha).
9. Uday Kotak - Vice-Chairman and Managing  Director of Kotak Mahindra Bank.
10. Ravi Ruia - Vice Chairman Essar Group
11. Chandan Mitra  - Editor and Publisher The  Pioneer,  former Member of Parliament (Rajya  Sabha)
12.  Capt CP Krishnan Nair - Chairman Leela Group  of  Hotels, Padma Vibhushan
13. Rajesh V. Shah  - Managing Director Mukund  Ltd,  Former President C.I.I.
14. Lord Meghnad Desai-    Writers, Economist.  Member of the House of Commons, UK
15. Kishwar Desai- Writer
16. Vandana Shiva  -  Writer, Social activist,  Scientist
17. Leela Samson  - Eminent dancer, writer, Padma  Shri Awardee
18. Dr Beatrix D'Souza -  educationist , former  Member  of Parliament,
19. Dr. Sonal Mansingh- Eminent dancer, Padma  Vibhushan Awardee
20. Ajay Singh - former Deputy Minister for  Railways,  former Ambassador to Fiji, journalist
 

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