Doctors remove bullet stuck in Delhi minister Gopal Rai's neck for 17 years

PTI

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Rai had suffered the gun shot in 1999 during an agitation for decriminalisation of students' politics in Lucknow University.

Delhi Transport and Rural Development Minister Gopal Rai. (Photo: PTI)

New Delhi: A bullet stuck in the back of Delhi Transport Minister Gopal Rai's neck for the past 17 years was successfully removed on Friday at a hospital here.

"He (Rai) has had a bullet in his neck from 1999, which was lodged at the back of his neck and over time had migrated to burrow under the skin at the back of his body. The surgery has been performed successfully and the bullet has been removed without complications," a statement from the Apollo Hospital said.

His condition after the surgery is stable, Rai's close aide said. The minister was admitted to the hospital on Thursday for a planned surgery.

Rai had suffered the gun shot in 1999 during an agitation for decriminalisation of students' politics in Lucknow University, following which he had complete quadriplegia for one-and-a-half years. Then, he started recovering and after three years, he was able enough to walk and became independent, the statement said.

The gunshot wound caused spinal cord injury by indirect effect (kinetic energy from a projectile travel, shock wave propagation and temporary cavitation along the track of the bullet) which is miraculous as direct gunshot wound to the neck leads to complete irreversible quadriplegia in most cases, it said.

Rai, according to the statement, also has residual neurological impairment in his extremities, mainly in the right upper limb and some imbalance in the lower extremities for which he will visit Apollo hospital at Hyderabad for upper limb rehabilitation and later move to Apollo hospital Chennai for gait training.

Lt Governor Najeeb Jung, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and Delhi Tourism Minister Kapil Mishra met him in the hospital.

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