Mumbai court acquits mother of murdering newborn girl child | mumbai | Hindustan Times
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Mumbai court acquits mother of murdering newborn girl child

mumbai Updated: May 26, 2010 19:51 IST
sessions court

A sessions court on Wednesday acquitted a 28-year-old woman accused of murdering her newborn girl child after her lawyer argued that like most mothers she was in a state of depression soon after giving birth and moreover there was no evidence to show that the child was born alive.

Bhayender resident Sunita Mehta (name changed), a chartered accountant, had given birth to a girl child on January 14 last year. According to the prosecution, Sunita allegedly banged her child's head on the bathroom wall leading to the infant's death.

The child's body with its umbilical cord still attached was found by the sweeper of Sunita's society wrapped in a plastic bag in the garbage dump.

Sunita was arrested 10 days later and was booked for murder and concealment of birth by secret disposal of body.

Her lawyer Ashish Chavan argued that she was in a state of depression when the child was born out of 'precipitate labour' (a medical term used to refer to delivery where the child comes out of the womb within three hours).

Chavan argued that immediately after the delivery of a child, a mother suffers from temporary insanity.

The prosecution failed to prove that the new-born child was alive at the time of birth. According to Chavan, the post
mortem doctor did not conduct the hydrostatic test, which could conclusively prove whether it was a still birth or not.

Additional Sessions Judge M K Walchale after considering all the arguments acquitted Sunita of charges of murdering the child but found her guilty of secretly disposing the body.

Sunita was sentenced to time she had already undergone in custody since her arrest, ie 16 months.