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India Supreme Court approves passive euthanasia

India’s Supreme Court has given conditional approval for passive euthanasia.
Passive euthanasia involves withdrawal of medical treatment with the deliberate intention to hasten the death of a terminally-ill patient.

In a landmark judgement, the Constitution Bench, headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra has has also allowed “living will” that will authorise the withdrawal of all life support systems if in the opinion of the doctors he has reached an irreversible stage of terminal illness.
A ‘living will’ is made by a person in his normal state of mind that is to be executed in the event of a terminal illness if he reaches an irreversible vegetative state.
The top court has also issued strict guidelines and said the guidelines will remain in force till a law is in place.

Justice A.K. Sikri, Justice A.M. Khanwilkar, Justice D.Y. Chandrachud and Justice Ashok Bhushan were the other members of the Constiution Bench.

Common Cause, an NGO had moved the top court way back in 2005 seeking right to make a ‘living will’ authorising withdrawal of life support system in the event of will makers reaching irreversible vegetative state.
The NGO was represented by Prashant Bhushan in the top court.

Source: Gulf News

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