38.6c New Delhi, India, Friday, June 21, 2024
Legal Insiders

Justice M.S. Sonak Becomes First in Goa to Register a "Living Will"

By Jhanak Singh      04 June, 2024 11:50 AM      0 Comments
Justice M S Sonak Becomes First in Goa to Register a Living Will

Goa: Justice M. S. Sonak, the senior-most presiding judge of the Bombay High Court at Goa, made history by becoming the first person in the state to register a "living will" or advance medical directive. This milestone event took place during a program organized by the Goa branch of the Indian Medical Association (IMA) and the Goa State Legal Services Authority (GSLSA) to release a booklet on Advanced Medical Directives (AMD). Goa has become the first state in India to operationalize such directives.

A living will, also known as an advance directive, is a legal document that allows individuals with declining health or terminal illnesses to specify their medical treatment preferences in advance. This directive enables them to express their wishes regarding life-sustaining treatments, such as the use of life support, in case they become unable to communicate due to a vegetative state or other incapacitating conditions.

Justice M. S. Sonak, who serves on the Goa Bench of the Bombay High Court, registered his living will on Friday, becoming the first person in Goa to do so. "This is a momentous occasion. We are all extremely busy living our lives, and that gives us hardly any time to contemplate end-of-life issues...which are inevitable, and for which we must start preparing a little early," Justice Sonak said at the event organized by the IMA Goa branch and GSLSA.

In 2018, the Supreme Court of India legalized passive euthanasia, contingent upon the individual having a living will. The Supreme Court recognized the living wills of terminally ill patients who could go into a permanent vegetative state and issued guidelines to regulate the procedure. In 2023, the Supreme Court eased the process for passive euthanasia by modifying certain existing guidelines for living wills. "Goa is the first state that has formalized, to some extent, the implementation of directives issued by the Supreme Court. This is a beginning and there will be some teething issues, which shall be overcome. A first step in the correct direction has been taken," Justice Sonak remarked during the event, which also saw the release of a booklet on advance medical directives.

Officials noted that Goa is the first state to implement and operationalize advance medical directives. According to the guidelines, a person who wishes to create a living will must draft it in the presence of two witnesses. The will then needs to be certified by a gazetted officer or notary and forwarded to the main Mamlatdar of the taluka, who will send it to the nodal officer appointed by the District Collector for safe custody.

Dr. Shekhar Salkar, an oncosurgeon and former chairman of the Goa Medical Council, shared a personal story during the event. "Today is an emotional day for me. My father died in March 2007. He was put on a ventilator twice. When he was about to be put on a ventilator for the third time, I thought it was unlikely to be of any benefit to him. I had to make a decision. So, I consulted with my siblings and explained to them that it would be better that we take him home. I feel it was the best decision I could have taken at that time. He passed away at home after three days...he breathed his last in my arms. His peaceful exit was very important."

Dr. Sandesh Chodankar, president of the IMA's Goa branch, highlighted the efforts behind the operationalization of advance medical directives. "Preliminary discussions for the operationalization of advance medical directives were held in February, and within a short period and with support from the High Court of Bombay at Goa and the GSLSA, the mechanism for implementation has been put in place," he said.

This event marks a significant step towards ensuring that individuals in Goa can make informed decisions about their end-of-life care, respecting their wishes and dignity.



Share this article:

About:

Jhanak is a lawyer by profession and legal journalist by passion. She graduated at the top of her cl...Read more

Follow:
FacebookTwitterLinkedinInstagram


Leave a feedback about this
Related Posts
View All

Cap on Iron Ore mining in Odisha: Supreme Court seeks MoEFCC views [Read Order] Cap on Iron Ore mining in Odisha: Supreme Court seeks MoEFCC views [Read Order]

Explore the Supreme Court's inquiry into sustainable iron ore mining in Odisha. Learn about the MoEFCC's involvement, economic impacts, and intergenerational equity considerations in this comprehensive coverage.

Can't be uniform criteria for identifying forest areas: SC [Read Judgment] Can't be uniform criteria for identifying forest areas: SC [Read Judgment]

Supreme Court rules against uniform criteria for identifying forests across states, upholding state-specific approaches due to diverse geographies.

Justice M.S. Sonak Becomes First in Goa to Register a "Living Will" Justice M.S. Sonak Becomes First in Goa to Register a "Living Will"

Justice M. S. Sonak registers Goa's first "living will" at an event by IMA and GSLSA, marking a historic step in the state's implementation of advance medical directives.

TRENDING NEWS

gujarat-hc-judge-to-watch-maharaj-to-decide-plea-for-stay-on-release
Trending Judiciary
Gujarat HC judge to watch 'Maharaj', to decide plea for stay on release

Gujarat HC to watch Junaid Khan’s movie “Maharaj” to decide on release stay plea. The film’s release was postponed due to concerns from Pushtimarg sect devotees.

20 June, 2024 12:26 PM
sc-orders-cbi-probe-into-neet-ug-irregularities-stays-hc-proceedings-while-refusing-to-stay-counselling
Trending Judiciary
SC orders CBI probe into NEET UG irregularities, stays HC proceedings while refusing to stay counselling

The Supreme Court suspends NEET UG 2024 HC proceedings, refuses to stay counselling; issues notice for CBI probe into exam irregularities.

20 June, 2024 01:43 PM

TOP STORIES

india-tv-journalist-rajat-sharma-sues-congress-leaders-for-defamation
Trending Judiciary
India TV journalist Rajat Sharma sues Congress leaders for defamation

Veteran journalist Rajat Sharma sues Congress leaders for defamation in Delhi HC, alleging tweets damaged his 40-year reputation. Justice Krishna reserves order.

15 June, 2024 12:09 PM
miscreants-scribble-ram-on-goat-headed-for-bakri-eid-sacrifice-gau-gyan-foundation-demands-action
Trending Crime, Police And Law
Miscreants scribble "Ram" on goat headed for Bakri Eid sacrifice, 'Gau Gyan Foundation' demands action

Miscreants scribble 'Ram' on goat headed for Bakri Eid sacrifice in Mumbai, animal welfare organization Gau Gyan Foundation demands police action for hurting religious sentiments.

15 June, 2024 05:49 PM
offence-committed-outside-india-by-indian-citizen-requires-centres-sanction-us-188-crpc-for-trial-in-india-kerala-hc
Trending Judiciary
Offence committed outside India by Indian citizen requires centre’s sanction U/S 188 CrPC for trial in India: Kerala HC [Read Order]

Kerala HC quashes proceedings against a husband for cruelty committed in Australia, citing lack of Centre’s sanction under Section 188 CrPC for trial in India.

15 June, 2024 06:06 PM
women-including-housewife-approach-ncw-against-controversial-ips-officer-gyaneshwar-singh
Trending Crime, Police And Law
Women, including housewife, approach NCW against controversial IPS officer Gyaneshwar Singh

Two women approach NCW against controversial IPS officer Gyaneshwar Singh, citing harassment for tweets based on news reports about his involvement in high-profile cases.

17 June, 2024 03:10 PM

ADVERTISEMENT


Join Group

Signup for Our Newsletter

Get Exclusive access to members only content by email