Body of 27-day-old Kerala baby exhumed after locals raise suspicion over her death

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Body of 27-day-old Kerala baby exhumed after locals raise suspicion over her death

The body of a newborn baby in Kerala’s Idukki district, who was allegedly hurriedly buried after her death on Wednesday, was exhumed by the police and sent for a post-mortem. 

The 27-day-old baby, Vishwalakshmi, developed breathing problems on Wednesday and was taken to the primary health centre at Vattavada in Devikulam at 11 am. She was, however, pronounced brought dead. Before a post-mortem could be conducted, her relatives buried the child’s body. 

However, local residents around the area approached the Devikulam SI MK Dileep Kumar, claiming that the baby had died under mysterious circumstances and that is the reason the baby was hurriedly buried. This is when the police decided to write to authorities that her body be exhumed and a post mortem be conducted to find the cause of death. 

“Normally, when an unnatural death is reported at a hospital, the doctor should inform the respective police station, as per the Kerala Medico Legal Act. However, in this case, the doctor failed to inform the police. Idukki SP T Narayanan will submit a complaint to the district medical officer, demanding action against the doctor who failed to inform the police,” the Devikulam police said. 

The police then submitted a letter to Idukki District Collector, stating that the child’s body needs to be exhumed and an autopsy needs to be conducted to reveal the actual reason behind the death of the newborn child. 

On Saturday, the body was exhumed in the presence of the Devikulam sub-collector, Premkrishnan, and the body has now been sent for post-mortem.

Vishwalakshmi was a second child and her parents are now under police observation.

"The police have been camping in the cemetery for the past two days. We registered a case under Section 174 (unnatural death) of the Indian Penal Code. We will probe if there was a murder attempt behind the death of the girl child,” the police said.