CUTTACK: The SCB Medical College and Hospital (SCBMCH) is in a fix over keeping custody of the baby girl at the centre of child-swap controversy even as the samples for the DNA test are scheduled to be collected on May 2.
The Orissa High Court, while directing conduct of DNA tests to establish the parentage of the almost 30-day-old baby, had ordered the SCBMCH to take care of her until the reports came in. However, the authorities of the Sick Newborn Care Unit (SNCU), where the baby has been kept since her birth, along with the Obstetrics and Gynaecology (O&G) Department are not in a position to keep her for much longer.
The baby has begun to grow and begun to move her limbs. She has gained weight and begun to kick the walls of the warmer bed of the SNCU. Thus, she is in great risk of falling down and sustaining injuries. Besides, she is also making loud noises.
According to sources, a newborn can be kept in an SNCU for a maximum of 42 days if the child is in a proper health condition. Under the present circumstances, in the absence of the mother or parents the child can’t be shifted to the general ward in O&G Department or Paediatrics Department due to various considerations like hygiene, care and security. “The DNA test is a time-consuming affair and it will take more than a month to obtain the reports. It would be very difficult on the part of the hospital to keep the baby under its care till then,” said a senior doctor.
Faced with such a dilemma, the hospital authorities are planning to move the High Court to shift the child to a proper childcare facility after the procedures for the DNA test are completed. Meanwhile, the Registrar (Vigilance), Orissa High Court, has issued notices to the SCBMCH authorities and the complainant __ Sushanta Mallick and wife Rashmita Mallick __ and the other couple Nirpuama Mallick and husband Sukanta Mallick fixing the date for sample collections to May 2 at 11.30 am. The samples would be drawn in the presence of the Registrar under supervision of Head of Forensic Medicine and Toxicology (FMT) department Prof. A Behera. The samples would be sent to the Institute of Molecular Biology, Hyderabad.
Meanwhile, the High Court-appointed Advocates’ Committee, comprising PR Das, Tarananda Patnaik and Dr PK Pradhan, on Saturday visited the SCBMCH to enquire about the well-being of the baby.