Girl run over and then left to die
The van driver stops for a moment, presumably realising in horror that he has just hit a toddler. Then he drives on - crushing her again beneath his rear wheels.world Updated: Oct 17, 2011 23:56 IST
The van driver stops for a moment, presumably realising in horror that he has just hit a toddler. Then he drives on - crushing her again beneath his rear wheels.
What follows is arguably even more horrifying: a dozen passersby ignore two-year-old Yueyue as she lies in agony in a busy market in southern China. Several glance at her bloodied body before continuing, while others walk or wheel around it.
Their apparent indifference means that she is hit again, by a truck. Surveillance camera footage from the busy wholesale market in Foshan, Guangdong, shows that it takes seven minutes before a woman finally stops to help.
The young girl’s fate has prompted horrified soul searching in China since the images were aired on a local television station. The footage has been watched more than 1.5m times on the popular Youku video sharing site.
Shanghai Daily reported that the little girl had died of her injuries in hospital after the collision on Thursday, but other state media including the news agency Xinhua said she remained in a deep coma.
A doctor surnamed Peng told China Daily that medics had declared her braindead on Sunday and she could die at any time. He said at best she would remain in a vegetative state on life support.
The widespread reluctance to help strangers has already lead to an anguished public debate in the country. Many say they are too scared, blaming extortion attempts by people who have accused Good Samaritans of causing their injuries - and judges who have backed such claims.
But some talked of a new moral low after seeing passersby - including a woman holding a small girl by the hand - walk around a two-year-old lying in a pool of blood.
China Daily claimed that the woman who stopped, a rubbish collector, was even told by shopkeepers to mind her own business when she tried to find out the child’s identity.
Many internet users expressed fury, describing those who ignored Yueyue as less than human.
“Where did conscience go … What has happened to the Chinese people?” wrote one, Reissent1987.
Several pointed out that it was a rubbish collector - among the poorest and often worst-educated members of society - who stopped to help, while others carried on.
But some said that people should ask themselves how willing they would have been to help before criticising.
One said that while the footage was heartbreaking he would have been “numb” to Yueyue too.
“Would you be willing to throw your entire family’s savings into the endless whirlpool of accident compensation? Aren’t you afraid of being put into jail as the perpetrator? Have you ever considered that your whole family could lose happiness only because you wanted to be a great soul?” he wrote.
Chinese media said the two drivers who had hit Yueyue were now in police custody.