The woman who stole a one-day-old boy from Parel’s Wadia hospital on Wednesday had been coming to the hospital from two days prior and was seen loitering around the ward by the hospital staff.
The police believe she was scouting for an opportunity to make away with an infant. “When we questioned the hospital staff and showed them the sketch of the accused, they claimed that they had been seeing the woman in the hospital since Monday,” said an officer investigating the matter.
He added, “If the hospital had a CCTV camera network in place, those monitoring it would have seen the woman moving suspiciously and questioned her.”
A patient at the hospital and a relative had seen the woman running with the infant. They told the police that she was wearing an orange kathiawari saree.
However, the police are now worried that the woman may harm the child. “With the case receiving so much attention, it is possible that the woman may panic and try to harm or abandon the infant. Considering he is a new born, he is more vulnerable,” the officer said, adding, “While we are confident of solving the case, we need to do so before she does anything to the baby.”
The police are also checking the medical records of various hospitals to check for women who may have recently had a miscarriage.
The sketch of the woman and a photograph of the infant have been sent to police stations in the country that have major religious places under its jurisdiction. “In the past, we have found that in such cases people misuse religious places and try to take shelter there for a few days,” said the officer. Meanwhile, the CCTV footage from a medical shop and other establishments dotting the lane leading to the hospital has not yielded anything.
Vikram Patil, senior inspector, Bhoiwada police station, said, “We have scanned the footage, but nothing of consequence has emerged so far.”