New Delhi: The Unnao rape victim, who was set afire by five men on Thursday passed away at national capital’s Safdarjung Hospital on Friday night. The woman breathed her last at 11:40 PM on December 6. “She suffered cardiac arrest at 11:10 pm and we tried to resuscitate her, but she could not survive and at 11:40 pm she died”, news agency ANI quoted Dr Shalabh Kumar, HOD (burns and plastic) as saying.

The rape survivor had reportedly told her brother that she wanted to live. Speaking to a leading news channel her brother had stated that she wanted capital punishment for the accused.

Earlier in the day, her father had expressed fear that she may not survive. “My daughter’s condition is extremely critical, only God can save her now,” he had told media persons.

On December 5, the woman was admitted to a Lucknow hospital with 90 per cent burns, later she was airlifted to Delhi and admitted to the Safdarjung Hospital in extremely critical condition. The Delhi Traffic Police had provided a “green corridor” for hindrance-free movement of the ambulance carrying her from the airport to the hospital.

The 23-year-old rape survivor was on her way to a court in Rae Bareli when was set on fire by five men outside the Sindupur village in Unnao district. Within hours, all the five men involved in attack were arrested.

The five men, who attacked her also included the two, who were accused of raping the woman in December. They were identified as — Shivam Trivedi, his cousin Shubham, Shivam’s father Hari Shankar Trivedi, uncle Ram Kishore Trivedi and Umesh Bajpai.  Notably, one of the two men accused of raping her last year was granted bail 10 days back. The other man had been on the run.

The issue also echoed in both the houses of the Parliament. Speaking in the Lok Sabha, Congress MP Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury asserted, “The Unnao victim has 95% burns, what is going on in the country? On one hand there is a Lord Ram temple being built and on the other hand, Sita Maiya is being set ablaze. How are criminals feeling so emboldened?”

BJP minister Smriti Irani countered Adhir Ranjan’s attack and said that the issue of women safety and respect should not be given communal colour. “A member used Telengana and Unnao incidents but selectively forgot Malda. Rape has been used as a political weapon in the West Bengal. Whatever happened in Telegana and Unnao are shameful and accused should be hanged, but these incidents should not be used for doing politics,” the Union minister said.

Vice President Venkaiah Naidu had also condemned the heinous act, saying that the lawmakers must send out a signal to the society that in such incidents action should be taken promptly and adequately, as a result, these incidents are not repeated.

“What is needed, is not mere arrest in one case. We must send out a signal to the entire country and society that in such incidents action should be taken promptly, swiftly, and adequately, so these things are not repeated again,” the Naidu had said in Rajya Sabha yesterday.