A newborn girl, declared dead by a doctor at Dhaka Medical College Hospital early today, was found alive hours later, just before she was being buried at a city graveyard.
The doctor declared the premature baby dead minutes after Shahinur Akter, 27, gave birth to her around 4:45am after six and half months' pregnancy.
Hospital staffers put the "dead" baby in an abandoned box of hand gloves and asked Shahinur's husband Yeasin Mollah, a driver by profession, to take her to Azimpur graveyard for burial, the husband told The Daily Star.
Yeasin took the baby to Azimpur graveyard, but he was suggested to go to Rayerbazar graveyard where the burial cost is comparatively lower as he lacked the money.
"I took my baby to Rayerbazar graveyard. The graveyard staffer told me that it will cost Tk 500. As I agreed, a grave was dug. But minutes before the burial, the box jerked and she showed signs of movement inside," Yeasin said.
"I opened the box and found my baby alive. She was moving and opening her month," he said.
Yeasin then rushed the baby straight to DMCH again.
"The on-duty doctor and nurse of Ward No. 211 said there is no vacant seat to admit the baby and asked me to take her to another hospital," Yeasin alleged.
The baby was however admitted after Yeasin refused to take the baby elsewhere as he did not have the money to treat her in a private hospital
"We are very poor...besides, how could they declare a living baby dead?" Yeasin, also the father of another nine-year-old daughter, said.
Contacted, DMCH director Brig Gen AKM Nasir Uddin said the baby has been admitted to the hospital and is doing well now.
"We will investigate the incident," he said.
In April 2018, another new born baby was declared dead by DMCH doctor but was later found alive when the child was being buried at Azimpur graveyard. A similar incident occured in 2015.