Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Acid victim dies after 25 days in hospital

KARACHI, Feb 10: Maria Shah, the 22-year-old midwife from Shikarpur who suffered extensive burns last month, died here on Tuesday morning — nearly a month after acid was thrown on her face by a man whom she had refused to marry.

“Ms Shah’s whole body was affected by acid burns. Despite our best efforts, we failed to save her life,” said a senior official of the Civil Hospital’s Burns Centre, where she was admitted on Jan 16.

“The body was formally handed over to her family. They returned to their home town in an ambulance provided by the hospital,” said Dabeer-ur-Rahman, Executive Director of the Burns Centre.

“The victim was brought to the hospital in a very critical condition a day after the incident.”

Ms Shah’s face was disfigured after acid was hurled at her by Arsalan Sanjrani at a private clinic in Shikarpur where she had been working as a lady health worker.

Initially, the young woman was taken to a local hospital, which later referred her to the Burns Centre.

According to Arsalan, he was a matriculate and in love with Maria since school days. He claimed he provided her free rides to school for years on his rickshaw. He said he committed the crime after she refused to marry him.

The Supreme Court has summoned Shikarpur DPO Khadim Hussain Rind to appear before it “with facts”.

BURIAL: Maria Shah was buried in Shikarpur’s Chiningi graveyard on Tuesday night.

A large number of relatives and social workers attended the Namaz-i-Janaza.

Talking to newsmen after the burial, Baqar Shah, Maria’s father, said that in the beginning ministers and NGOs helped in providing medical treatment.

But after the first week, no attention was paid to the regular supply of medicines.

Baqar Shah recalled, with irony, that the government had assured him of financing her treatment abroad. He said that Marya would not have died had she received “proper medical care”.

The SHO of the police station concerned said there was no need of a fresh FIR, adding that an interim challan would be presented in a court soon.

Marya Shah’s family has called upon the government to hang Arsallan Sanjrani. (Dawn)