The Centre’s unilateral decision to transfer the 23-year-old Delhi rape survivor to a Singapore hospital raises several important questions. The move could have been justified if the doctors treating her at the Delhi hospital had been incompetent, or the hospital lacked the infrastructure to deal with her medical condition. But, that’s clearly not the case. Why was the decision taken in such a hush-hush manner? And why weren’t her doctors involved in the decision-making process? Is it because the girl is said to be in a critical state, and the government is too scared of the consequences if she succumbs to her injuries? In the last nine days, UPA-II had cut a sorry figure, appearing helpless in the face of mounting spontaneous protests in Delhi and in other parts of the country. It’s spin doctors have time and again proved unequal to the task, and some of its leaders have only infuriated the agitators with their insensitive remarks.
We ardently wish for the girl’s recovery. The least she deserves is her life, which a bunch of criminals tried to take in the most gruesome manner. But if this is a cornered government’s pathetic face-saving measure by getting her out of the country, then it must be criticised.
It had already used a couple of tactics to defuse tension on the streets of Delhi with little effect. The death of police constable Subhash Chand Tomar and the blame game between chief minister Sheila Dixit and the Delhi police commissioner Neeraj Kumar didn’t quite serve the purpose. At its most vulnerable state, UPA-II, with its waning stars, cannot think beyond the prospect of its survival.