New Delhi – Aruna Shanbaug, a 67-year-old Indian nurse who was raped at the age of 25 in 1973 died on Monday after 42 years in coma.
His attacker spent seven years in prison before being released, but then her friend Pinki Virani went to court to seek euthanasia for her but lost the case on the ground that she was not qualified to act for Shanbaug.
Shanbaug was working as a nurse back then when an hospital worker attacked her with a dog chain.
The assailant used the chain to yank Shanburg’s head back before sodomizing her, and the impact cut off oxygen supply to the brain, causing her severe nerve and brain injury.
She was discovered 11 hours at the basement after her brutalization.
Shanbaug remained in a vegetative state at a Mumbai hospital for years before her discharge, but she was taken back to the King Edward Hospital some days ago when she suffered from pneumonia and had to be placed on a ventilator. She later passed away.
Her friend and journalist Virani maintained that Shanbaug did not just die on Monday, she said she died since 1973 when she was attacked and that her recent passage is only a legal confirmation of her death.
Virani had fought in 1999 for Shambaug to undergo euthanasia, but India’s top court could not grant her appeal because she was not empowered to represent the rape victim.
However, the Supreme Court of India in a 2011 landmark ruling permitted life support to be removed for the terminally ill, but this was not done for Shambaug.
The provision of the court was that for euthanasia to be done, the request must be made by family members and supervised by doctors after the courts have granted approval.
Virani was not eligible on any of these grounds and failed in her bid to allow her friend a peaceful death.