The condition of 20-year-old Vidya who was attacked on January 30 has now turned critical

Even as 23-year-old Vinodhini was battling for life at a city private hospital, another young woman became a victim of an acid attack.

Her family is now worried that she might not survive.

On January 30, 20-year-old Vidya, who was working in an internet browsing centre in Adambakkam, was accosted by Vijaya Bhaskar. Vidya was alone at the centre during lunch time when Vijaya Bhaskar, angry that she had spurned him, confronted her. When he tried to throw a bottle of acid at her, she turned away, and the acid burnt her back. He prevented her from escaping by pushing her down onto the acid splashed on the floor. He then locked the door and escaped, said her mother, Saraswathi.

Vidya, screaming in pain, managed to bang on the door and attract the attention of shopkeepers near the centre. People in neighbouring shops then informed Saraswathi. Vidya was rushed to a private hospital, from where she was referred to Government Kilpauk Hospital.

Four days ago, Vidya underwent surgeries at the hospital but her condition has now turned critical.

“She was unable to stand when the hospital staff tried to dress her wounds today,” her cousin told reporters here on Tuesday. “She is constantly worried that she will die,” she said.

Vidya’s father Jayaseelan died when she was seven years old. Saraswathi, a resident of Parameswari Nagar, works as domestic help in Adambakkam.

Vijaya Bhaskar had wanted to marry Vidya and had pursued her for three years. Saraswathi urged him to approach her with his parents and seek Vidya’s hand formally. When he persisted, she approached his parents who said that they would think of their son’s marriage only after his sister’s marriage. Saraswathi then told Vijaya Bhaskar to avoid meeting Vidya until the marriage was fixed. Angered by this, Vijaya Bhaskar had taken the extreme step, Saraswathi said.

The family is seeking financial help to shift her to a private hospital. “The hospital is overcrowded and is unable to provide a separate room for Vidya. She has developed infections and we are afraid, like Vinodhini, she might succumb to her injuries if she does not get specialised attention,” said her brother Vijay, who works in a company that manufactures paint coats.

Though Vijaya Bhaskar has been arrested and remanded to judicial custody, the family has no further details on the case. “I have been at the hospital with my daughter and we have not followed up with the police on the status of the case. We heard that he threw acid used to remove zari from silk saris,” Vijay said.

The investigating officer of the case, when contacted, said that the sample of the acid had been sent for chemical analysis. “We are waiting for the results, so I cannot say anything yet,” he said.

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