100 protest outside the Irish embassy in Savita’s native India

About 100 protesters held a demonstration outside the Irish embassy in New Delhi, India, over the death of Savita Halappanavar.

The crowd, carrying posters of the dead 31-year-old dentist and accusing Irish authorities of committing “medical murder”, were prevented by police from getting close to the compound.

Smriti Irani, president of the women’s wing of the main opposition Bharatiya Janata Party, was among the protesters outside the embassy and she was allowed in as part of a four-person delegation to meet ambassador Feilim McLaughlin.

“The Irish ambassador assured us that there could be a possibility of inviting international experts to be part of the investigation and we told him that Savita’s husband should also be part of it,” Irani said.

“The ambassador acknowledged that there is intense pressure (on Ireland), not only from the people of India but globally, over Halappanavar’s death,” Irani told reporters amid shouts of “we want justice”.

“We firmly believe no religion permits the murder of an innocent woman... There was clear and substantial risk to the life of the mother which was a reality. The hospital and its staff deliberately overlooked it.

“I speak as an Indian today, cutting across all political parties and ideologies. This horrific death of a pregnant, young Indian woman should be an example for all of us to stand united and ensure that even a small, middle class family will get justice when India stands united,” Irani said.

Salman Khurshid, the foreign minister, expressed regret over her death: “It is extremely sad and unfortunate.

“Whatever the inquiry does, human loss cannot be compensated.”

Indian Communist Party leader Brinda Karat said not treating Ms Halappanavar’s condition as a medical emergency was a “crime”.


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