Woman withdraws plea before Delhi HC to stop friend from travelling abroad for euthanasia : The Tribune India

Woman withdraws plea before Delhi HC to stop friend from travelling abroad for euthanasia

Petitioner’s friend, who is in his late 40s, suffering from Myalgic Encephalomyelitis

Woman withdraws plea before Delhi HC to stop friend from travelling abroad for euthanasia

Photo for representational purpose only. iStock

PTI

New Delhi, August 18

The woman, who approached the Delhi High Court with a plea to stop her friend from travelling to Switzerland to undergo euthanasia on account of his debilitating sickness, on Thursday withdrew the petition.

The counsel for the petitioner told Justice Yashwant Varma that she was in a “dilemma” and now wishes to withdraw her petition which was filed last week.

“I would like to withdraw this petition as I came to know that (my friend) is deeply traumatised after hearing about it. I am afraid that the very purpose of filing this writ may go in vain if I proceed,” the lawyer read the statement in court which allowed the petition by a 49-year-old woman to be withdrawn.

In her petition, the petitioner sought direction to the Central Government not to grant “emigration clearance” to his friend, in his late 40s and suffering from Myalgic Encephalomyelitis, who was supposed to travel for physician-assisted suicide.

Myalgic Encephalomyelitis or Chronic Fatigue Syndrome is a “complex, debilitating, long-term neuroinflammatory disease” and the petitioner’s friend, who had the first symptom of the disease in 2014, is “now completely bed bound” and can only “walk a few steps inside the home”, the plea said.

The petitioner stated that her friend was earlier receiving treatment at the AIIMS but the same could not continue during the pandemic due to “donor availability issues”.

“There are no financial constraints for providing Respondent No.3 (petitioner’s friend) with better treatments within India or abroad. But he is now adamant about his decision to go for Euthanasia, which also affects the life of age-old parents miserably. It is humbly submitted that there still persists a ray of hope for the betterment of his condition,” said the plea filed through advocate Subash Chandran KR.

The petitioner thus further prayed for a direction to the Centre to constitute a medical board to examine the medical condition of her friend who has obtained the requisite visa for Switzerland on the false pretext of getting treatment, and also provide necessary medical assistance to him.

“Petitioner herein most respectfully prayed that this Hon’ble Court may direct Respondent No.1 (Ministry of External Affairs) not to grant emigration clearance to Respondent No.3 as he made false claims before Indian as well as foreign authorities for getting travel permissions; and also direct Respondent No.2 (Ministry of Health) to constitute a medical board to examine the medical condition of Respondent No.3 and provide necessary medical assistance by considering his peculiar health condition,” the plea said.

The parents, family members, and friends of the petitioner’s friend would suffer irreparable loss and hardship and will be going through an agonizing moment if the prayers are not allowed, the plea said.

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