Delhi Gang Rape
Demonstrators hold candles and placards during a candlelight vigil to show solidarity with the gang rape victim in New Delhi, in the northern Indian city of Chandigarh.

The 23-year-old female paramedical student who was gang raped in a moving bus in India's capital New Delhi is "fighting for her life" in a Singapore hospital, say doctors.

The young woman has suffered "significant brain injury" and also has lung and stomach infections. 

"The patient is currently struggling against the odds, and fighting for her life,"said Dr Kelvin Loh, Chief Executive Officer of Singapore's Mount Elizabeth Hospital. 

"Our medical team's investigations upon her arrival at the hospital yesterday showed that in addition to her prior cardiac arrest, she also had infection of her lungs and abdomen as well as significant brain injury."

"Prior to her arrival, she has already undergone three abdominal surgeries and experienced a cardiac arrest in India. A multi-disciplinary team of specialists is taking care of her and doing everything possible to stabilise her condition".

The victim continues to remain on life support at the specialised facility in the hospital. She withstood a six-hour flight from Delhi in an air ambulance and was accompanied by a team of doctors and her parents.

"Despite the best efforts of our doctors, the victim continues to be critical and her fluctuating health remains a big cause of concern to all of us," said India's Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde earlier.

The girl and her male friend were brutally attacked in a moving bus in the heart of Delhi just after 9:00pm (4:00pm GMT) on 16 December. According to the police, the girl was sexually assaulted for nearly an hour after her male companion was beaten with iron roads and left unconscious. She was also assaulted with blunt objects and the duo was thrown out of the bus on the street after hours of torture.

All the six accused men were arrested and the trial in the case, being fast-tracked following unprecedented public pressure, is expected to begin by early January.

Delhi has been witnessing a wave of protests spearheaded by students for the past several days demanding justice for the victim.

The Indian government has so far dismissed three police officers in connection with the incident and announced a series of measures to douse public anger that include more police night patrols and background checks on bus drivers and other workers along with a strict ban on buses with tinted windows and curtains.  

The government has also set up two committees, one to look at speedy trial of cases involving sexual assault on women, and the other to look into the circumstances that led to the horrific incident in Delhi. 

President's Son Sparks Controversy

As the protests continue, Abhijit Mukherjee, son of India's President Pranab Mukherjee and a member of the ruling Congress party, has courted controversy by branding the women protesters as not students.

He described the protests as "pink revolution" by women wearing heavy make-up who "wanted to appear on television channels". 

"These pretty women, dented and painted, who come for protests are not students. I have seen them speak on television, usually women of this age are not students," Mukherjee told a regional television channel. 

Under fire for what the media and activists have dubbed as sexist remarks, Mukherjee has tendered an apology. His own sister has condemned his statement.