A day after MiD DAY reported about a nine-day-old girl child found wailing in a trash can in Seva Nagar near Milan Subway in Santacruz, police have tracked down her mother and arrested her for discarding the baby. The arrest came about because of a peculiar plan cooked up by the baby’s parents to rid themselves of a child born out of wedlock and yet allow it a shot at life away from them.
It was the father of the child who approached the cops to tell them he knew the woman who had abandoned the infant in the garbage bin in Santacruz on Thursday. He showed them a photo of the mother holding the baby. His intentions were fine: to tell the cops about the baby so they could rescue her and put her up in an orphanage. But the officers, wary of his keen interest in the case, were curious as to how he had obtained the mother’s photo with her baby.
A police source said, “An hour after the child was found, a 21-year-old man arrived at the police station and said, ‘I have seen the woman who dumped the girl.’ The officers were not convinced of his claims until he showed them a picture of a woman holding the baby, which triggered their suspicion. After questioning him, the cops smelt a rat. They grilled him some more and he broke down and confessed that he was the biological father, and had hatched the plan to desert the baby.”
A police officer said, “The couple was in love. Being young, they did not want a child but were unable to abort it. After it was born, the father wanted the baby to live. So the duo decided to discard the child and inform the police about it incognito, so the baby could be taken care of. The man did not think the woman would be traced. Some 10 days ago, the woman gave birth at a Santacruz hospital. For two days, the man tried to give the infant away to someone who wanted it, but could not find any takers. That is when they hatched the plan to save themselves and their child.”
Setting a trap
Based on the father’s statement, the police set a trap and arrested the woman from Kherwadi in Bandra (E) yesterday evening. She is suspected to be a minor and her family was unaware of the pregnancy. Police Sub-Inspector Nilesh Bhujbal said she hid her pregnancy from her family members by telling them that her body parts, including her stomach, had swelled due to an infection.
As soon as the woman was nabbed, she began pleading with the police not to inform her family about the childbirth. According to Senior Inspector Rajendrasingh Pardesi, police launched a hunt for her, and registered a case under Section 317 (exposure and abandonment of child below 12) of the Indian Penal Code.
“The woman has been booked. We are verifying her age and investigating the case further,” Pardesi said. PSI Bhujbal added, “The woman is not in very good health. She is not even able to walk properly. Two female constables have to accompany and assist her all the time.”