SC upholds passive euthanasia with guidelines

Supreme Court’s five-judge Constitution bench on Saturday upheld passive euthanasia with guidelines and procedures.  A five-judge Constitution bench of the apex court, headed by Chief Justice (CJI) Dipak Misra, passed the order.

The other four judges of the Court include Justices Arjan Kumar Sikri, Ashok Bhushan, DY Chandrachud and AM Khanwilkar.  The top court of the country said that there should be guidelines for drafting ‘living wills’ and authenticating them.

The ‘living will’ is a concept, where a man or woman decides in much advance, whether he/she wants to be kept on life support or vegetative condition, in case of a terminal illness.

Senior Supreme Court lawyer Prashant Bhushan, appearing for the NGO Common Cause, which had filed the PIL, had earlier submitted to the apex court that since a patient under coma or vegetative conditions couldn’t express his/her wish, so he should be given the right to die.

The top court said that living will be permitted, but with the permission from family members of the person, who sought passive euthanasia and also a team of expert doctors, who opine that the person couldn’t come out or the chance of his or her revival is impossible.


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