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T. Nhaveen at Penang Hospital on Monday. He has been declared brain dead. Pix by Zulaikha Zainuzman

THE family of T. Nhaveen, 18, who was declared brain dead after being assaulted and raped with a foreign object by five youths, are praying for a miracle.

Nhaveen’s uncle, A. Suryakumar, said the family would not pull the plug on him even if he did not regain consciousness.

“He is a young boy, only 18. We will keep him on life support as long as needed. There is no question of taking him off life support,” he told New Straits Times at Penang Hospital yesterday.

The attack took place in Jalan Kaki Bukit here on Saturday at 2.20am, when the sales promoter and his friend, T. Previin, 19, met two of the suspects, who were Nhaveen’s former classmates, while buying burgers.

The two taunted Nhaveen and called him names, including pondan (sissy).

Nhaveen allegedly pleaded with the two to stop taunting him, warning them to back off. However, the two then called their friends to the scene and started beating Nhaveen and Previin.

Previin escaped, but Nhaveen was dragged to a field and was further assaulted.

The group, aged 16 to 20, allegedly inserted a blunt object into Nhaveen’s anus.

Suryakumar said he was shocked by the incident as the youth who allegedly assaulted his nephew had grown up in the same neighbourhood.

“Nhaveen has been friends with Previin only since mid last year and they are good friends. Previin picked up Nhaveen from his workplace at a mall in Bayan Lepas before going to the burger stall.”

Nhaveen’s mother, D. Shanti (centre) being consoled by realtives at Penang Hospital on Monday. Pix by Zulaikha Zainuzman

Another uncle, R. Thiyagarajan, said Nhaveen had been bullied by the two ex-classmates when they were in school.

“Nhaveen used to come home with torn uniforms and tell us he was bullied. We didn’t take it seriously as bullying in school was common and the bullying never resulted in serious injuries.

“Nhaveen didn’t let us interfere or speak to the school about the bullying as he was afraid it would make things worse.”

He said the family was devastated and shocked that such a thing had happened to Nhaveen, who was the live wire in the family.

“He is always jovial and he lights up the room with his humour. He is talented in music and had planned to enrol in a music course in a college in Kuala Lumpur on June 22.”

He said the family was learning more about what happened.

“Some bruises from the attack are just showing up.”

Thiyagaran said the family was getting a second opinion from a specialist at a private hospital on whether anything could be done for Nhaveen and if it was safe to move him.

Another relative, who declined to be named, said doctors at Penang Hospital had revealed that Nhaveen did not have a heartbeat when he was brought to the hospital on Saturday.

“The doctors resuscitated him and put him on life support.”

Nhaveen’s family and friends gathered at the waiting area outside the hospital’s Intensive Care Unit (ICU).

Many, including his mother, D. Shanti, 45, and aunts, wept. Previin, who had a black eye and was in a hospital gown, was seen speaking to Nhaveen’s family.

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