Delhi: Battered baby critical, police hunt for parents

Baby Falak, was brought to AIIMS - in an unconscious state – on January 18 by a teenager, Mahi Gupta, who claimed to be her mother.

Zeenews Bureau

New Delhi: A team of doctors at the AIIMS Trauma Centre is fighting against the odds to save the two-year-old abandoned baby girl who was brought to the hospital in a comatose condition with severe head injuries and human bite marks.

Baby Falak, was brought to AIIMS - in an unconscious state – on January 18 by a teenager, Mahi Gupta, who claimed to be her mother. But after discrepancies were noted in her story, the teenager was sent to a juvenile home, even as the police are trying to locate the real parents of the baby.

Police said they had constituted several teams to find out the real parents of the child and the people who had handed over the baby to the teenaged girl.

The baby had suffered from multiple injuries on her head and body. She has a fractured skull and there is blood clotting on the right side of her brain - it appears that either her head was smashed against a wall or she suffered a blow from a heavy object. Her left hand is fractured while there is a swelling on her right hand and there are human bite marks all over her face, forehead and right leg.

Although, a team of specialists are at work but chances of Falak’s survival remain slim given the severity of the injuries inflicted on her.

The National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) condemned the incident that has shocked the nation and ordered a detailed investigation in the case and asked for a factual report from the police in 15 days.

Updating reporters about her condition on Friday, Dr Sumit Sinha, an associate professor of neurosurgery and one of the doctors treating Falak, said, “We operated upon the child. She is off the ventilator. We are quite hopeful, but the child is in a critical condition. The injuries are serious.”

Sinha pointed out that the chances of survival in cases of serious head injuries is only 30-40% and of those who recover only 50% are able to become normal, while adding that the recovery is better in children as compared to adults.

Dr Deepak Agrawal, who is also part of the team, said, “She is stable but very critical. If she survives then also she may remain dependent all her life. We are hopeful that she might come out.”

Police have meanwhile registered a case against unknown persons.

While admitting the baby, Mahi had said she lived along with her `husband` Rajkumar Gupta in a paying guest accommodation in Mahipalpur area of south Delhi, said Nirmal Thakur, spokesperson of the AIIMS Trauma Centre.

Deputy Commissioner of Police Chhaya Sharma said the girl was stopped in the hospital Jan 18 after her story seemed suspicious.

A case of kidnapping, abandoning a child below the age of 12 years and causing hurt has been registered against unknown people, Sharma said.

According to Sharma, Mahi had gone missing from her home in Sangam Vihar area of south Delhi last year and her parents had lodged a complaint.

A police officer said the girl had eloped with someone.

The baby was with the girl for the past 20 days, but police are still investigating how she got there.

The girl told police that the child was bruised when she tried to prevent her from running around. The child also slipped in the bathroom later, she said.

Falak’s condition has shocked the country, especially when one realises that such brutality to a two-year-old child was committed by a fellow human.

Psychologist Samir Malhotra said, “There are not many (people) but there are some who have personality disorders… they are not created overnight but it happens over the time…the way they fail to see a human not as human.”

Govt assures help

The Delhi government today said it will do whatever possible to help the two-year-old abandoned baby girl.

"Let the report come out. Delhi Government will extend
all possible support. We will do whatever is required," Chief
Minister Sheila Dikshit said when asked about the child.

Meanwhile, politicians and women activists condemned the appalling incident.

"The tragic thing is that such cases are not rare and occur very often in our country. Child sexual abuse is all the worse because we have no social infrastructure to support a child in distress," Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) leader Brinda Karat said.

Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Shahnawaz Hussain said: "It (incident) is inhumane and stringent action should be taken against the culprits..."