March 17, 2018

SC Legalizes Passive Euthanasia: Right to Die With Dignity

11 March 2018, 01:30 | Ross Houston

SC allows passive euthanasia, upholds 'right to die with dignity'

How sexual assault victim Aruna Shanbaug's case started the national debate on euthanasia

Hence it was inevitable that the Supreme Court judges, as they made their pronouncements on legalising passive euthanasia, should draw inspiration from some of the immortal words articulated on the topic down the ages.

In the process of building a constitutional link between right to life and right to die, the Supreme Court said the economics of extending the life of a terminally ill person with no hope of revival did not make sense in a country where the majority is not able to afford health services.

Parliamentarian Baijayant Jay Panda, who moved a Private Members Bill regarding passive euthanasia in 2016, told YourStory, "I've long supported the right of terminally ill patients to die with dignity, should they wish to, instead of lingering on in pain".

A five-judge constitution bench headed by Chief Justice of India (CJI) Dipak Misra said passive euthanasia and advance living will are "permissible". The living will is defined as the person's right to issue a pre directive where in which he or she allows the withdrawal of life support or discontinuation of medicine if a situation arises in future of person being in a terminally ill state.

Though it ultimately refused to do so in 2011, it did pass a landmark judgment back then that opened the door for passive euthanasia in the rarest of rare cases. People now will be allowed to grant a living power of attorney to another.

Though the government took the lead in decriminalising suicide and is ready with a draft legislation formalising passive euthanasia, it struck a contradictory note in opposing living wills, essentially a person's desire to exit from life at a point of no return.

In active euthanasia, a specific overt act is performed to end the patient's life whereas in passive euthanasia, something is not done that would be necessary to preserve a patient's life, the panel noted.

Rene Boucher pleads guilty to attacking his neighbor Sen. Rand Paul
In January, Boucher's attorney, Matt Baker, said his client may face jail time, but said that will be up to the judge. A friend of Paul's said the senator had gotten off his riding mower to remove a limb when he was tackled from behind.

British investigators visit graves of Russian ex-spy's wife and son
In a statement to members of Parliament, UK Home Secretary Amber Rudd refused to be drawn on who might have been responsible. Skripal and his daughter, but authorities provided no details, saying only that they had not exhumed any bodies.

Mikaela Shiffrin wins 5th slalom globe in 6 seasons
It marked Shiffrin's 42nd career World Cup victory and 11th this season. "For sure I have a big lead", Shiffrin said. The World Cup finals begin Wednesday with women's and men's downhill, and the season concludes next Sunday.

"Human beings have the right to die with dignity", the court said, while hearing a plea on the issue by a non-government organisation.

The apex court also laid down guidelines as to who could execute the advance directive and how, what should it contain, how should it be recorded and preserved, when and by whom can it be given effect to, what if permission is refused by the medical board and also in the event of revocation or inapplicability of advance directive.

The Press Trust of India news agency said that in each living will, a court-appointed medical panel will review the instructions before they can be carried out. It can be executed only by a person with a sound mind, containing absolute, clear and unambiguous terms and also specify the person who can execute it. "Most patients in public hospitals support the decision not to use life-support systems when we explain the prognosis".

Passive euthanasia entails withdrawing artificial life support causing the death of a person who is in a permanent vegetative state, with no chance of recovery.

The apex court also laid down similar guidelines for cases where there is no advance directive.

While these should do for the time being, Parliament should lose no time in legislating on the subject, arriving at safeguard conditions, the means of their enforcement and the penalties for subverting these conditions on medical professionals and family members of the patient undergoing passive euthanasia, after proper deliberation.

Other News

Trending Now

Samuel L. Jackson Shares Captain Marvel BTS Image
Jackson's Nick Fury had any idea about any of the other heroes and insane stuff going on in the world", Feige said . The script will be written by Geneva Robertson-Dworet based on an earlier draft by Nicole Perlman and Meg LeFauve.

Gauri Lankesh murder: Special Investigation Team arrests man linked to right-wing group
AVM Vedhmurthy, legal counsel for Naveen Kumar, said the police did not have any substantial charges against his client. The SIT has made a decision to transfer the case of Kumar's plot to eliminate K S Bhagawan to the Mysuru police.

University Hospitals opens hotline, increases security after eggs, embryos potentially damaged
Thousands of eggs and embryos may have been destroyed after a hospital fridge malfunctioned. "We are so very sorry this happened". According to the latest figures from the ARSM, more than 6,200 women froze their eggs in 2015.

Twitter CEO wants to open up verified accounts to all users
Proposals on how Twitter should address its health-safety metrics are being accepted through April 1, 2018. During yesterday's livestream , Gadde said the site has a large team focused on spam and fake accounts.

Man City's Gabriel Jesus admits knee injury still lingers in his mind
His side reached the UEFA Champions League quarter-finals with a 5-2 aggregate victory over the Swiss club. Manager Guardiola sees the game as an important test of his players' focus.

49ers to meet with Richard Sherman
Sherman expects to be ready for the regular season but could be limit in August for training camp and parts of the preseason. However, Sherman's Achilles injury makes him too much of a risk for the Colts, who aren't necessarily in a "win now" mode.

European Union warns Trump on trade war, eyes peanut butter and whiskey tariffs
Malmstrom said that the Commissioners hope that as the European Union is a United States security partner it will be excluded. The tariffs would "seriously impact the normal order of global trade", the Ministry of Commerce said.

Jarvis Landry signs franchise tag with Dolphins, reports say
The Dolphins are reportedly set to trade Landry to the Browns , with Miami receiving two draft picks, one in 2018 and one in 2019. The Dolphins franchise-tagged Landry , because they didn't want to lose the receiver without getting compensation.

'Couldn't care less' about US election interference: Russian President Vladimir Putin
Putin said Russian Federation has neither the tools nor the will to meddle in elections. "At least send us a piece of paper". The interview was aired on Friday evening, days before the 2018 Russian presidential election.

Nun in legal dispute with Katy Perry collapses and dies in court
However, the sisters preferred Hollister's offer as it was more at $15.5 million and they had a stronger bond with her. Instead, the sisters wanted to sell the property to Hollister who meant to turn the convent into a boutique hotel.