Doctor: Young woman gang-raped in India dies
Hundreds of police in riot gear fanned around New Delhi's downtown to ensure order during an anti-rape march planned by student bodies Thursday, a day after the critically-injured victim of the Dec 16 gangrape was flown to Singapore for medical care. (CNN photo)
(CNN) — A 23-year-old Indian woman, whose gang rape aboard a bus in New Delhi spawned days of mass protests across India, has died, according to a doctor who was treating her at a Singapore hospital.
The patient “passed away peacefully” at 4:45 a.m. Saturday (3:45 p.m. ET Friday), with her family and Indian officials at her side, Dr. Kelvin Loh, chief executive officer at Mount Elizabeth Hospital, said in a statement.
The woman had been in “extremely critical condition” since being admitted Thursday to the Singapore hospital, and Loh had said Friday that she’d “taken a turn for the worse.”
“She had suffered from severe organ failure following serious injuries to her body and brain,” Loh said. “She was courageous in fighting for her life for so long against the odds, but the trauma to her body was too severe for her to overcome.”
Authorities haven’t released the name of the rape victim, but protesters are calling her Damini, which means “lightning” in Hindi.
Her injuries were so severe that she spent days in intensive care, battling for her life, after the December 16 incident.
Police said Saturday that she had recovered enough to give a statement to a magistrate from her hospital bed the night before. But on Sunday, she underwent another surgery to wash out infection in her abdomen, her doctors said.
Reported rape cases have increased drastically over the past 40 years — from 2,487 in 1971 to 24,206 in 2011, according to official figures. New Delhi alone reported 572 rapes last year and more than 600 in 2012.