Delhi rape victim taken off ventilator, 6th accused arrested
New Delhi: Five days after her brutal gang- rape, the 23-year-old paramedical student was Friday taken off ventilator support but she showed early signs of infection setting in, as government vowed to file the chargesheet in the case "quickly" and seek maximum punishment of life term for the six accused.
Even as protests continued for the fifth day here including at India Gate over the dastardly crime in a moving bus on Sunday night, Government complimented Delhi Police for cracking the "blind case" within a very short span of time.
Union Home Secretary RK Singh told a press conference that the police have been able to arrest right persons--five of them were arrested--while one was still on the run.
Singh said henceforth no 'gunda-gardi' (rowdiness) and misbehaviour to women will be tolerated and police action will be visible on the ground.
However, shortly after that Akshay Thakur, the sixth and final accused in the Delhi gang-rape case was arrested from his home in Aurangabad in Bihar.
But the heat was on the Police when the Delhi High Court slammed it for being "evasive" in its probe status report in providing details of its officers on patrol duty in the area covered by the bus in which the girl was gang-raped for about 40 minutes.
In an emotional moment, the male friend of the girl who was with her during the sexual assault met the victim for the first time at Safdarjang hospital during which she enquired from him about her assailants.
"She has shown some mixed response. She has shown some signs of improvement and there are some signs of deterioration. She is off the ventilator at the moment. She is no more on ventilator. She is breathing spontaneously on her own," Dr B D Athani, Medical Superintendent of the Hospital, told a press conference. She was on ventilator in the ICU since she was admitted on Sunday night.
On the deterioration in the girl's health, Athani said the level of Bilirubin, the yellow breakdown product of normal heme catabolism, has increased to five which is a cause of concern as it would affect liver.
"There are early signs of setting up of infection. Infection seems to be setting in. These are early signs of sepsis. That is a part of the blood culture and several other. We have sent blood for test," he said.
Around 60-70 activists of Arvin Kejriwals outfit Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) staged a sit-in in front of Congress President Sonia Gandhi's 10 Janpath residence this evening demanding immediate hanging of the rapists.
The girl began speaking to doctors when she asked for a
glass of water and expressed her desire to meet her mother, who has been in and out of Safdarjung Hospital.
Doctors said she was "conscious", able to speak and breathe on her own while noting that her respiratory rate, pulse rate and urine output were normal.
Athani said the trials to take the patient off ventilator began at 12.30 PM yesterday and she was breathing without the help of the machine till 2 AM and from early morning till 3.30 PM this evening she was "off ventilator".
"She is stable and she is breathing on her own," Athani said, adding that platelet count is normal.
However, on the flip side, the girl's condition deteriorated on account of plummeting of the glycolytic level and White Blood Cells with doctors calling them "early signs of setting in of infection and sepsis."
The fifth accused--a helper who was absconding for the past five days--was apprehended from Uttar Pradesh's Badaun and he has claimed to be a minor.
"The fifth accused has been arrested in the rape case. His age is being verified before giving details," Delhi Police Commissioner Neeraj Kumar told a press conference in the presence of Home Secretary RK Singh.
Singh said the accused has claimed that he is a minor but investigators are now verifying the claim.
He said police will seek day-to-day hearing of the case for expeditious trial so that the accused could be convicted soon.
The Home Secretary said no public transport -- buses, taxis, autos -- will be allowed to ply in the national capital without police verification of drivers, cleaners or assistance and vehicles of those who are found to be violating the rules would be impounded.
He said drunk driving, drinking and loitering, driving with tinted glass and other unlawful activities will be dealt firmly and all public transport have to install GPS device for close monitoring.