Declared dead at an upscale hospital, the prematurely born twins were handed over to their parents in a polythene bag, but just before their last rites, one was found alive.
Police have registered a case under Section 308 of the Indian Penal Code which governs cases related to attempt to commit culpable homicide and is punishable by up to seven years in jail.
The Delhi government ordered an inquiry into the “criminal negligence” with Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal promising “strict action”.
The parents, who were devastated by the news broken to them by Max Hospital (Shalimar Bagh) on Thursday, were shocked when they found one of the twins moving.
“We tore the packet, there were 2-3 clothes and polythene bags. The kid was still breathing. We rushed the baby to a nearby nursing home in Pitampura,” the father told reporters.
The mother of the boy-girl twins, born on Thursday morning, was brought to the hospital from a nursing home in Paschim Vihar, police said.
“An inquiry regarding the said incident is to be initiated and a preliminary report is to be submitted within 72 hours and a final report within a week,” an order, signed by city Health Minister Satyendar Jain, said.
Reacting to the incident, Health Minister JP Nadda said he had directed the Delhi government to look into the matter and take necessary action.
In a letter written to the principal secretary health of the Delhi government, Special DGHS BD Athani said that the action taken in the matter be conveyed to the ministry within two weeks.
“The allegation is serious in nature and demands a serious inquiry. The details of the case needs to be verified and action needs to be taken against the personnel concerned, if found guilty of medical negligence,” Athani said in the letter.
Police in a statement said, “Yesterday, we received a call at Shalimar Bagh Police Station. The callers said one Varsha, wife of Ashish, was referred to the Max Hospital from a nursing home in Paschim Vihar on account of possibility of premature delivery.”
“She was admitted there on November 28. The doctors had told the family that she was serious and the chances of survival of the twins were slim, as she was six months pregnant,” they said.
Varsha had given birth to a boy and a girl. The family was later informed that the twins were stillborn and handed over to the family, police said.
The Max Hospital in a statement on Friday said, “It has been brought to our attention that a premature (22 weeks) newborn baby who is reported to be on life support at a nursing home was unfortunately handed over without any sign of life by Max Hospital Shalimar Bagh.”
“This baby was one of the twins delivered on November 30 morning. The other baby was stillborn. We are shaken and concerned at this rare incident,” it said.
The statement said a detailed enquiry was initiated, pending which, the doctor concerned was asked to proceed on leave immediately and they were in constant touch with the parents and are providing all the needed support.
The Delhi Police has sent the documents pertaining to the case to the Medical Council of India and the Delhi Medical Council for their opinion in the matter.
The Delhi Medical Council also has taken cognisance of the case and decided to examine it, said the registrar of the DMC, Girish Tyagi.