Hariram and Maya Yadav had enjoyed every moment of their journey towards parenthood. But their joy was short-lived when they realised they had given birth to conjoined female twins.
Unable to bear the cost of a surgery to separate the infants, joined at the chest and abdomen, the couple “donated” their babies to the local missionary hospital, where they were born on July 2.
Even though the authorities at Padhar Hospital, 18 km from Betul in southern Madhya Pradesh, assured medical assistance for the kids in future, the parents, who barely manage to make ends meet, expressed inability to look after them.
They filed an affidavit on a R50 stamp paper and authorised the hospital to take care of the babies.
“The infants have been kept in the neo-natal intensive care unit and our paediatrician is taking care of them,” said Rajiv Choudhary, superintendent of Padhar Hospital.
Since the babies are healthy and their internal organs are separate, a surgery to separate them would not be a complicated one, doctors said.
But such a surgery would cost around Rs 10 lakh, a huge amount for the Yadavs, residents of Chudia village in Betul district.
“We tried our best to convince the couple to keep the infants as they needed parents, but they insisted on donating them,” Choudhary said.
Soon after the donation, the Yadavs left the hospital and could not be traced for comments.
Legal experts say the donation and adoption is “illegal”. “Parents cannot desert their children in this manner. If they want to give away the children for adoption, they will have to complete all legal formalities and the court has to be satisfied that the adoptive individual or agency will take proper care of the kids,” said Awadh Hazare, a local lawyer.