Mum of deformed baby with rare disease refuses to breast feed her
By Osahon Ibizugbe
Priyanka Kumari, 25, refused to breastfeed her deformed little girl after giving birth to her in India on Tuesday. The tot, who is yet to be named, has a huge growth on her head, is covered in a hardened shell of skin and has bulging eyes.
Her arrival shocked locals in Chakiya district, with curious members of the public flooding to the family home in Banshghat to see the baby. Many have offered prayers believing she could be an incarnation of a Hindu god. But Priyanka and her farm labourer husband Balindra Mahto, 34, are convinced “the child is cursed”.
The first-time mum said: “I keep cursing myself for this. When I saw her for the first time, I was shocked. I thought to myself – how could I deliver something like this? Now, I am worried about her future. I prayed to God and expected a very healthy boy or girl baby. I never thought in my dream that I will be going through such trauma in my life. This baby girl is not normal like other children.”
Her husband added: “I am totally confused. I don’t know what to do. I am just following the instructions of the doctors at hospital. God could have given her a healthy baby. But now whatever has happened, it’s for good. I am praying for her healthy future.”
The baby girl suffers from a rare genetic condition called Harlequin Ichthyosis.It occurs due to malnutrition and causes thickening of the skin and deformities.
Dr Rajan Sinha, who is tending to the baby at the state-run facility, said: “The mother’s health condition is good, but we can’t say same about the baby. In such cases, the probability of survival is only one in 10 million cases.”