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India hopes for fair Irish probe into Savita's death

Posted on Nov 20, 09:54PM | IANS

India Tuesday said it expected a transparent investigation by Ireland into the death of Savita Halappanavar, an Indian pregnant woman who died after doctors there refused an abortion citing Catholic laws of the country.

India's Overseas Indian Affairs Minister Vayalar Ravi told reporters here: "I hope political parties will take a decision that such incidents are not repeated."

"We can definitely say that the law must protect the life of every human being. Faith, nobody can question. But that does not mean you can restrict medical aid and let the patient die," Ravi said here when asked about Savita's death and what India expected from Ireland.

"That is why there is anger all over the globe, including in Ireland where people have shown their resentment," he said.

"Human rights institutions can and will take up the issue and ensure the investigation is transparent," he added.

Communist Party of India (Marxist) leader Brinda Karat said the probe did not seem to be impartial.

"There is a clear conflict of interest if the management of the hospital is involved in a probe against the hospital itself. It does not seem to be impartial," she told a TV news channel.

Savita, from Karnataka, died of septicaemia Oct 28 in Ireland after doctors there refused to remove the foetus following a miscarriage on the ground that Ireland was a Catholic country.

Savita had arrived Oct 21 with back pain at Galway University Hospital where she was found to be miscarrying at 17 weeks.

Her family has also protested against the probe team. Her parents have reportedly written to the Indian president and the prime minister, asking for an independent probe into the case.