London: The husband of Indian dentist Savita Halappanavar, who died after being denied an abortion in Ireland, broke down in tears as he recounted the incidents leading up to his wife's death during an inquest which opened today.
Praveen Halappanavar explained how his wife asked twice for a termination as she lay in hospital in excruciating pain and broke down in the dock 45 minutes into his statement, which had to be halted by coroner Ciarn McLoughlin to give him time to recover.
"Savita asked for a termination two times. Savita was in tears. She said she could not take it. The doctor did not come back that day," he told the hearing.
According to local Irish media reports, the courthouse was packed to capacity today for the hearing before a jury of six men and four women into the death of 31-year-old Savita who died at Galway University Hospital following a miscarriage last October.
Praveen said he and his wife had asked consultant obstetrician Dr Katharine Astbury for a termination on October 23, 2012, after learning that she was miscarrying at 17 weeks. Astbury told her that "unfortunately" the foetus was still alive.