He’s been in the Intensive Care Unit for three days and Mohammed Danish has already had two complicated brain surgeries. He’s barely responsive to touch, has not spoken yet and is still on ventilator support. He had a fractured skull with bleeding in the frontal lobe.
The 22-year-old was with his father Mohammed Akhlaq on Monday night when a mob in their Bisara village in Dadri dragged them out of their house following rumours that they had consumed beef. Akhlaq and Danish were beaten severely and, after police intervention, brought to Kailash Hospital in Noida at 1.30 am Tuesday.
Both were unconscious. Danish was bleeding profusely from a blunt force injury to his head and Akhlaq was barely breathing. They were rushed to the emergency room and prepped for surgery, but Akhlaq succumbed 30 minutes later while Danish hung on with ventilator support.
On Thursday night, Danish had a Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS) reading of 11. On this scale, three indicates a deep, unconscious state, 9-13 a moderate injury and 15 a normal state.
Danish’s elder brother, Sartaj, who works as a technician for the Air Force in Chennai, has watched over him since Tuesday. “He has not spoken yet. That is all I am waiting for… for him to open his eyes, recognise me and say something, say anything,” said Sartaj, who gets to be with Danish in the ICU twice a day.
Senior consultant, Neurology, Dr Varun Bharghav said Danish’s condition had worsened before improving after two surgeries. “When he arrived, we detected a small bleed and swelling in his head, which was putting pressure on the brain. A day later, scans showed that the bleeding and swelling had increased,” Dr Bharghav said.
According to Dr Bharghav, they performed two surgeries, a left frontal craniotomy and a left frontal lobectomy. “He is showing signs of recovery. There is some response to stimulus in his eyes and in touch. However, we will have to watch and wait for two more days at least,” Dr Bharghav said, adding that Danish had also suffered other minor injuries.
“The major life-threatening issue right now is, of course, the head injury. He has other injuries like abrasions across his body and a few fractured bones in his face. But these are minor, for now,” Dr Bharghav said.
Other than Sartaj, Danish’s mother and sister have visited him at the hospital. “They could only see him for a few minutes before breaking down,” Sartaj said.
On Wednesday, the Uttar Pradesh government informed the hospital that they would bear all medical expenses incurred from treating Danish. “The government has given us compensation and are now paying for my son’s treatment, but for how long will this last and who will bring the attackers to justice,” said his mother, Ikram.