Indian national Sarabjit Singh was in a "deep coma" and put on ventilator support after being assaulted by a group of prisoners in a Pakistani jail, with doctors today saying that they will not be able to perform surgery on him till his condition stabilises.
Sarabjit, 49, was in an Intensive Care Unit of the state-run Jinnah Hospital in Lahore, where he was admitted yesterday after being brutally beaten by at least six other prisoners within his barrack at the Kot Lakhpat Jail.
Official sources told PTI that Sarabjit was in a "deep coma" and doctors were unable to perform surgery on him yesterday because of extensive internal bleeding caused by a severe head injury.
"No surgery can be performed till his condition stabilises," a source said.
The sources quoted doctors at Jinnah Hospital as saying that Sarabjit's condition was measured as 5 on the Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS), which indicates the level of damage or injury to a person's central nervous system.
The GCS comprises tests of eye, verbal and motor responses. The three separate values and their sum are considered in deciding a person's status. The lowest possible GCS score is 3 while the highest is 15.
Pakistani TV news channels quoted their sources as saying that next 24 hours would be crucial for Sarabjit.
Two Indian High Commission officials got consular access to Sarabjit Singh in the ICU of Jinnah Hospital this morning.
"The officials of India's High Commission in Islamabad obtained access to Sarabjit in the ICU of Jinnah hospital, Lahore at 2:00 am," External Affairs Ministry spokesman Syed Akbaruddin said.
"Doctors attending to Sarabjit Singh informed the Indian officials that he is in coma on ventilator and receiving IV drip," he said.
The Indian mission had contacted Pakistan's Foreign Office Friday night to seek consular access.
The two Indian officials went to the hospital and spent some time with Sarabjit. They then drove away from the hospital without speaking to the media. Security has been beefed up at the hospital, where dozens of police commandos have been deployed.