The police in Kashmir are grilling a doctor and his two co-workers for being involved in disposing off newborns born outside wedlocks in north Kashmir's Baramulla district. The government on Friday suspended the doctor after the police charged him with a murder case.
Senior Superintendent of Police, Kupwara, Irshad Ahmad said the police were working on two cases where babies were abandoned in October and November 2012. Both the dead newborns were found on the banks of a stream flowing through Kupwara, 90 km north of Srinagar.
"Investigations in one of the two cases led us to a woman who admitted to have delivered the baby in the local district hospital. After questioning, she identified the doctor and two others who helped her in delivery of the baby and later killed him," said Ahmad.
The police investigations reveal that once the healthy baby was delivered he was hit in the head before being thrown in the stream. The woman, who is around 20, and the man, who is around 30, were arrested this week. The accused woman is a school dropout and the man a local worker.
"We are investigating the other case to see if there is any link," said the police officer.
The police have registered a murder case against the doctor, who has been identified as Dr Shan-I-Alam. Two of his associates, Naseema, a parttime sweeper in the Kupwara sub-district hospital and Nazir Ahmad Mochi too have been arrested. The doctor also faces sections including 312 (causing miscarriage), 315 (Act done with intent to prevent child being born alive or to cause it to die after birth), and 304 (A) causing death by negligence.
According to the police, the doctor faces an FIR in a similar case in Tangmarg. An investigation is on if the doctor was also involved in an illegal abortion and killing of a baby in south Kashmir in 2009. The police refused to comment on these allegations.
Meanwhile, Kashmir director health Dr Saleem-ur-Rehman has suspended the doctor.
The valley is witnessing increase in cases of illegal abortions. In June 2011, three persons, including a doctor, were arrested for running an illegal abortion clinic in Srinagar. The accused doctor charged Rs. 10, 000 to 15,000 for conducting abortions.