A man and a Muslim preacher were arrested in Kozhikode Saturday on charges of denying breast milk to the former’s newborn baby on what the two claimed were religious grounds.
Abubacker Sidique and the preacher Hydrose Thangal are from Mukkom in Kerala’s Kozhikode district. Sidique had allegedly prevented his wife Hafsath from breastfeeding the infant after his birth Wednesday, insisting that the feed should come after five prayer calls from the mosque.
Sidique said he was acting on Thangal’s advice. He later got his wife and newborn son discharged from the hospital, reportedly against the doctors’ advice, and allowed her to breastfeed the infant after five prayer calls from the mosque — a full day later.
Police officials said the two were arrested under Sections 75 and 87 of Juvenile Act. A magistrate court Saturday remanded them in judicial custody for two days. Police said 75-year-old Thangal’s had several “clients” whom he offered medical and psychological “remedies”.