Savita’s husband to ask Reilly why she was allowed die

The widower of Indian dentist Savita Halappanavar will ask the health minister why his wife was allowed to die when they come face to face next month.

Savita’s husband to ask Reilly why she was allowed die

Praveen Halappanavar’s solicitor Gerard O’Donnell yesterday confirmed that his client had received a long-awaited invitation to meet Dr James Reilly, the details of which have yet to be agreed upon.

Confirmation that the meeting will go ahead took place on a day when candlelight vigils were scheduled for Dublin, Cork, and Galway to mark the first anniversary of Ms Halappanavar’s death.

However, the vigil in Emmet Place, Cork City, was poorly attended, with around just forty people.

The show of support in Dublin and Galway was stronger, with a couple of hundred turning out in Galway, where Savita had hoped to make her home.

Candles were lit in front of a single picture of Savita bearing the words: ‘For Savita, Never Again.’ A lone singer gave a rendition of ‘Nancy Spain’, ending with the line: “Savita we will never forget your name.”

The turnout was also reasonable at Stephen’s Green in Dublin, with many paying their respects at the gates of the Green.

Mrs Halappanavar died on Oct 28 last year at Galway University Hospital.

The 31-year-old was 17 weeks pregnant when she was admitted to the hospital a week earlier undergoing a miscarriage. She suffered from septicaemia.

Her widower has maintained that she repeatedly requested a termination but was refused because a foetal heartbeat was present.

Mr Halappanavar has met Dr Reilly before, but three major reports have since emerged and the widower is hoping to finally discuss their results. The upcoming meeting should provide an opportunity.

“The invitation only came on Friday so we still have to sit down and decide what time and date suits,” said Mr O’Donnell.

“We have been asking to meet James Reilly for quite some time now, so Praveen will be eager to put his questions to him.”

Mr O’Donnell said while his client “has a clear picture” of the cause of his wife’s death and the events that led to it, he still wants to know why they were allowed to happen.

Last month, Mr Halappanavar’s solicitor initiated legal proceedings against health chiefs and Ms Halappanavar’s obstetrician, Dr Katherine Astbury.

Yesterday, Ms Halappanavar’s father, Andaneepa Yalagi, said he wanted the Government to honour his daughter’s memory with a trust which would help people in need. “I want Savita to be remembered. I want the Irish Government to establish a trust for her memory,” he said.

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