Medical officials in Madhya Pradesh have rescued a baby girl from a sewage tank in the state’s Sheopur district, The Times of India reported on Thursday. Doctors suspect the mother, identified as Papita Gurjar, delivered the baby in the toilet. Her family claimed she must have “unconsciously given birth”.
The Sheopur district is known for its high sex-selective abortion and infanticide rate. However, it is unclear whether it was Gurjar’s intention to kill the baby.
The woman’s husband, Ghanshyam Gurjar, had taken her to the Vijaypur Community Health Centre after she complained of abdominal pain. Medical staff at the facility found something amiss when they realised that her pregnancy had been full-term but the baby was no longer in her womb.
“We suspected that she must have delivered the baby in the toilet,” said Dr Ashok Khare, medical officer of the clinic, according to The Times of India. “I immediately dispatched an ambulance to their house [in Bangrod village].”
The baby is undergoing treatment at a neo-natal care centre, and her condition is stable, a doctor said.
A medical examination revealed that the umbilical cord had been cut. “The police, along with the Women and Child Development Department, have begun an investigation to figure out whether there was something malafide behind the incident,” Sheopur Superintendent of Police Shiv Dayal told The New Indian Express on Friday.