A woman has approached the Delhi High Court seeking to stop her friend from travelling to Switzerland to undergo euthanasia on account of his debilitating inflammatory disease.
In her plea, the 49-year-old petitioner has sought a direction to the central government not to grant “emigration clearance” to her friend, in his late 40s and suffering from Myalgic Encephalomyelitis, who is supposed to travel for the physician-assisted suicide.
Myalgic Encephalomyelitis or Chronic Fatigue Syndrome is a “complex, debilitating, long-term neuro inflammatory 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 home”, the plea informs.
The petitioner has stated that her friend was earlier receiving treatment at 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 treatment within India or abroad. But he is now adamant on his decision to go for euthanasia, which also affect 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 Subhash Chandran KR.
The petitioner has 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) to 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 an irreparable loss and hardship and will be going through an agonising moment if the prayers are not allowed, the plea said.
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