REFILE-Indian rape victim surviving against the odds, Singapore hospital says

(Fixes typo in last paragraph)

SINGAPORE, Dec 28 (Reuters) - An Indian gangrape victim

whose assault in New Delhi triggered nationwide protests earlier

this month has suffered "significant brain injury" and is

surviving against the odds, the Singapore hospital treating her

said on Friday.

The 23-year-old medical student, who was severely beaten,

raped for almost an hour and thrown out of a moving bus in New

Delhi, was airlifted to Singapore on Dec. 26 for specialist

treatment.

"The patient is currently struggling against the odds,

and fighting for her life," Mount Elizabeth Hospital Chief

Executive Officer Kelvin Loh said in a statement.

"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."

The victim had already undergone three abdominal operations

before arriving in Singapore where her condition on Thursday was

described as "extremely critical".

Demonstrations over the lack of safety for women erupted

across India after the Dec. 16 attack on the unnamed victim,

culminating last weekend in pitched battles between police and

protesters in the heart of the capital.

Should the woman die, it could trigger fresh outrage

over the case, which caught Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's

government off-guard and triggered a blame game between

politicians and the police.

"We share the anguish and anger with the country over this

heinous crime," Singh told reporters on Friday. "Our prayers are

with the brave young girl and best possible medical care is

being provided to her."

New Delhi has the highest number of sex crimes among

India's major cities, with a rape reported on average every 18

hours, according to police figures. Government data show the

number of reported rape cases in the country rose by nearly 17

percent between 2007 and 2011.

(Reporting by Kevin Lim in Singapore and Satarupa Bhattacharjya

in New Delhi; Editing by Nick Macfie)

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