The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Second forsaken baby in same area

Calcutta, Dec. 12: A baby was found abandoned near a garbage vat early this morning in Jadavpur for the second time in a fortnight, turning the spotlight on mushrooming nursing homes in the area.

A few residents of Azadgarh were taking their morning constitutional when around six they stumbled upon a polythene bag stirring suspiciously. A closer look revealed that a “living creature” was inside.

When they opened the bag they found a baby boy curled up and blue in the early morning chill. “It could not have been more than a couple of days old,” said Paresh Baruah, one of those who found the baby.

Picking up the baby, which could barely cry, they rushed him to a nearby house where he was wrapped in a shawl. “The baby was also given a feed of warm milk as we thought he was going to die,” Baruah said.

The residents then called up the Jadavpur police station to report their finding. Officials arrived soon and took the baby to the M.R. Bangur hospital. Till reports last came in, the baby was doing fine in the care of the hospital staff.

Police officials recounted a similar incident that took place about a fortnight ago in Ranikuthi, near Azadgarh, in which another baby boy abandoned by the roadside was found by residents, who informed the police. “We had also taken that baby to hospital for treatment and we believe he is fine,” said an officer of Jadavpur police station.

“We are investigating who are behind the dumping of babies by the roadside.”

Locals say the mushrooming of nursing homes of questionable reputation in the area is responsible for the trend as unwanted babies are delivered and handed over to the mother. Since no registers are maintained — albeit for a fee — no one gets to know either the name or the address of the mother. The baby is then dumped by the wayside.

Residents say several complaints against these nursing homes have been made to the police, but ignored.

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