VILLUPURAM: A year after he grabbed headlines for catching fire mysteriously, the younger of the two ‘burning babies’ succumbed to diarrhoea here in the wee hours of Wednesday.
According to sources, Karunakaran (25), a daily wage labourer and a native of T Parangini village, was living with wife Rajeshwari (23) and three children Narmatha (5), Rahul (3) and Jeyaramachandran (1) in his mother-in-law’s house in Mozhiyanur village. While their daughter Narmatha was a normal child, the two sons caught fire mysteriously.
In 2013, Rahul, who was just three months old then, caught fire mysteriously. The boy, who suffered burns all over his body, was taken to JIPMER Hospital, Puducherry.
Suspecting it to be a case of Spontaneous Human Combustion (SHC), the doctors referred him to the Government Kilpauk Medical College Hospital (KMC)in Chennai for advanced diagnosis and treatment.
After carrying out over 30 tests, doctors declared there was no evidence of SHC on the three-month-old boy and suggested that the Child Welfare Committee and the police hold an investigation against Rahul’s parents and maternal grandmother on grounds of child abuse, after sheltering them at the Indian Council of Child Welfare.
Then, based on the verbal assurance from Rahul’s mother Rajeshwari and his maternal grandmother K Thulasi that they would ensure safety of the child, the officials handed the boy over to his parents without conducting a probe. Rahul never caught fire again.
On January 9, 2015, Rajeshwari gave birth to her second son Jeyaramachandran at the Mozhiyanur Primary Health Centre (PHC).
A week after his birth, Jeyaramachandran’s feet caught fire mysteriously. The boy, who sustained 10 per cent burns, was treated at the NICU in Mundiyambakkam GH, from where he was referred to the KMC.
The doctors declared it was not a case of SHC and the boy was discharged after three months. Yet again, the doctors suggested investigation be done to find whether it was a case of child abuse. But, neither the CWC nor the police registered a case and the boy never caught fire again.
On Tuesday, Jeyaramachandran, who was suffering from diarrhoea, was taken to the Mundiyambakkam GH at around 10.pm.
Saying his condition was critical, doctors there advised the family to take him to JIPMER Hospital. But, Jeyaramachandran died on the way.
Doctors at Mozhiyanur PHC, who declared the boy brought dead, handed the body over to the parents. The funeral took place in Mozhiyanur village on Wednesday evening.
Local sources said that the police were yet to register a case.