A baby girl who was born premature in Sanaa last week during the wartime was evacuated from Yemen. The new-born baby along with her mother, who had to quit Sanaa five days after her cesarean to catch a flight to Djibouti, reached Kochi on Thursday late night in a special flight which carried 382 Indians from the strife-torn country.
Admitted to a hospital in Kochi, the baby and her mother are recovering. Nurse R Raji, a native of Ochira in Kollam, has been living in Yemen for last 10 years along with husband Sash Kumar, employed in an oil firm.
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“As travelling at this stage of pregnancy was not recommended, we decided to stay back in Yemen expecting that the crisis would be over soon. But, the air strikes and reports of civilian death forced us to change decision. The visuals of air strikes and fireballs coming down to the city terrified me. On 1 April, I developed pain and was rushed to a hospital in Sanaa, where nurses from Kerala had almost packed up to flee the city. They were waiting to get the salary. But at the hour of crisis, all of them were helpful and nursed me,’’ Raji told The Indian Express.
Next day (on April 2), Raji underwent cesarean and gave birth to a baby girl. On that day, the baby was handed over to Raji’s sister-in-law, who is working as a teacher in Sanaa. Three days later. Raji was discharged from the hospital.
“I moved to sister-in-law’s house. Although Embassy was asking us to board flight at the earliest, we waited for two more days to lessen the risks of travelling at that situation,’’ said Raji.
On April 7, Raji along with her new-born baby boarded a flight to Djibouti, while husband Sash Kumar moved to Al Hudayadah port to catch ship to Djibouti.
“May be due to weather changes and dehydration, the baby got jaundice. Hence, we were taken to a hospital in Djibouti, where a doctor from Kerala oversaw our treatment,” said Raji.
After staying in the hospital for a day, the authorities arranged a special incubator to fly the baby, named Parvathi, to Kerala. Besides, Dr Usha Nambair, who had supervised the treatment in Djibouti, joined the flight. Also Raji’s sister-in-law Susa was also returning in the same flight.
Raji said she did not whether the hospital, where she had given birth to her daughter, was functioning now.
Raji’s elder daughter Lakshmi was staying in Kerala along with grandparents.
At Ochira in Kollam, Rajiv-Santhamma couple can’t yet breathe a sigh of relief, although their daughter and daughter-in-law have reached home from Yemen. Another daughter and her husband have to reach home safe from the war-ravaged country. “They are on the way,” said Santhamma.