Sonepur: The theft of a newborn girl from the district headquarters hospital (DHH) at Sonepur Saturday took a curious turn with the child being found dumped on the roadside near Saradhapali village under Pratappur police station limits, Sunday.
Police rescued the baby girl from the roadside and rushed her to the district headquarters and hospital for treatment. The mother of the infant, Santoshini Tandi — wife of Gajendra Tandi — identified the baby as her own.
Santoshini had delivered the baby in the hospital Saturday. A woman on the pretext of holding the baby in her arms for some time stole the infant from her grandmother when her mother was in the washroom after delivery of the child, Saturday.
Doctors conducted a check-up of the newborn and found its condition stable. Later, she was handed over to her mother.
Sonepur Police had swung into action after receiving a report from the father of the baby girl Gajendra Tandi.
As per the report, Santoshini was admitted to the gynaecology and obstetrics department of the hospital, Friday after she complained of labour pain. She gave birth to a baby girl later in the day and as there was no bed at the DHH. The woman and her child were forced to lie on the verandah of the department for post-delivery care and treatment.
The incident took place when Santoshini had gone to the toilet after handing over the baby to her mother-in-law. Later, a woman allegedly came and asked to hand over the baby to her on the pretext of administering some vaccine. The elderly woman gave the baby to the unknown woman. Though the family members of Tandi tried to trace the woman, she was found nowhere.
During the investigation, police found CCTV footage in which Santoshini’s mother-in-law was seen handing over the infant to a woman.
Sonepur SP Sitaram Satpathy said that the newborn girl has been rescued and admitted to the hospital for treatment. Police suspect that the baby girl might have been sold to someone and either by her grandmother or any of her kin. However, nothing can be clearly said as now the matter is still under investigation, he added.