| The maternity ward of Patna Medical College and Hospital. Telegraph picture |
Patna, March 22: The news of a woman arrested for trying to steal a baby from Patna Medical College and Hospital has brought hope to a mother who barely saw her newborn son.
This New Year’s Day, the newborn son of Samastipur resident Pinky Devi was stolen from the maternity ward of Patna Medical College and Hospital (PMCH). Although footage from closed-circuit television (CCTV) camera in the ward detected an unauthorised woman in the room, police have not been able to recover the baby yet.
On Thursday, a woman identified as Sangita was arrested after she allegedly tried to smuggle an infant out of the same ward. She would have been successful too if a relative of the new mother had not woken up in time to see her take away the baby.
Pinky, who had lost all hope to see her son after more than three months of losing him, is now a little hopeful of getting him back.
The resident of Dumaini village in Samastipur, around 110km northeast of Patna, told The Telegraph today: “I hope I get my son back. I couldn’t even see him properly before she stole him. It has been almost three months and I am always in tears waiting for him. I hope the police would help me.”
The police are also hopeful about leads to unearth a racket in stealing babies in course of Sangita’s interrogation.
Patna senior superintendent of police Manu Maharaaj said: “Her interrogation has given the police some important leads, but there has not been any breakthrough yet. Three teams are working on unearthing the racket, if any. Sangita’s arrest is a silver lining for the police.”
He added that the woman had given a man’s name to the police, who the police are now looking for.
“She has told the police about a man named Baba, who had asked her to steal the baby and bring the infant to him. It seems that the man has a gang, mostly comprising women, working under him. Their job is to steal infants from government hospitals where there is less security. The police have searched in a few places for the man and two more women in the gang but they have not been found yet. The arrest of Sangita is significant as it can help the police expose a racket of stealing infants. The gang might sell the babies to rich childless couples in different parts of the country or put them to some other work,” he said.
On Pinky’s lost son, he said: “The police also hope to find clues leading to the recovery of the infant stolen on January 1 this year. The police are keeping their fingers crossed.”
Apart from Pinky’s child being picked up from the maternity ward, another infant was stolen from PMCH’s maternity ward in May last year. The baby was recovered soon though.
A police officer said: “The police was lucky and the infant was recovered. The people arrested in the case had named one Meena Devi who was paid to do the job. The CCTV cameras captured her image too but the police are still to arrest her. Sangita’s arrest can lead to her as well. A team will soon be sent to Chhapra where Sangita claims to be from.”