The condition of a 16-year-old Iranian girl, Armita Geravand, who slipped to coma since an alleged hijab related incident on the Tehran metro, took a critical turn as her health reportedly "deteriorated" in a local hospital, according to local media reports on Wednesday. The incident has sparked controversy and raised concerns about the treatment of women in Iran.
Armita Geravand, as reported by the state news agency IRNA, fell into a coma due to low blood pressure. However, a Kurdish-focused human rights group has alleged that she was injured during an altercation with female police officers while traveling on the Tehran metro. The alleged altercation revolved around Armita's purported violation of Iran's strict dress code for women.
Despite the dedicated efforts of the medical staff at Fajr Hospital, the young girl's initially stable vital signs have taken a turn for the worse over the past few days, as reported by Borna news agency, which is affiliated with the sports ministry. "However, the medical team is continuing their efforts to improve Armita's condition," they added.
Armita Geravand, who resides in Tehran but originally hails from the city of Kermanshah approximately 500 kilometers (310 miles) from the Iranian capital, represents the Kurdish population of western Iran.
Western countries, including Germany and the United States, along with several rights groups, have voiced their concerns about the case, primarily driven by a video purportedly showing the incident circulating on social media.
This incident draws similarity with the case of Kurdish Iranian activist, Mahsa Amini, who allegedly breached Iran's strict dress code for women, triggered widespread protests. Mahsa Amini was arrested near a Tehran subway station and died in police custody.
The reports suggest that Armita Geravand, who was with friends and was not wearing a headscarf, was pushed into a metro train by female police agents.
In response to international comments and criticism of the case, Iran's foreign ministry spokesman, Nasser Kanani, labeled them as "interventionist." The head of the Tehran subway system has also denied any verbal or physical altercation between the teenager and other passengers or staff.
IRNA published interviews with two girls who claimed to be friends of Armita Garawand, corroborating the reported account of the incident. The case continues to draw international attention and raise questions about women's rights and treatment in Iran.