In a Herculean effort to save his pregnant wife and their unborn child, a man in Kerala walked through a forest for nearly 40 km in heavy rains to reach a hospital, but failed to save the baby.
The tribal man, Ayyappan, carrying his seven-month pregnant wife, Sudha set off for the hospital from the Konni forest in Pathanamthitta district (south Kerala) on Tuesday last by about 6am.
He walked to Kokkathod, about 40 km from the place he stayed in the forest, and then managed to get a jeep to take his wife to Pathnamthitta district hospital by 6pm. Sudha had convulsions and was referred to Kottayam medical college hospital.
“The woman’s life was saved since she was carried all the way, but the baby could not be saved. Labour was induced for the delivery of the dead foetus,” Dr Kunjamma Roy, head of the gynaecology department of the Kottayam medical college hospital told PTI. “The delivery was on Wednesday and the mother is recovering.”
When the woman was brought to the hospital, she had oedema (excessive build up of fluid in the body’s tissues), high blood pressure and convulsions. “Convulsions during pregnancy can affect both mother and child,” Dr Roy said.
Ayyappan and Sudha live in the Konni forest and eke out a living by selling honey and various other products from the forest.
With news of their struggle coming to light, offers of financial assistance have started pouring in.