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Kerala: Doctor cares for baby for month after his parents test positive

On Wednesday, Dr Mary Anitha handed over Elvin to his parents, who have completed their home quarantine after being discharged from the hospital.

Written by Shaju Philip | Thiruvananthapuram |
Updated: July 16, 2020 11:46:29 am
Dr Mary Anitha (left) with six-month-old Elvin and his parents in Kochi. (PTI)

A Kerala doctor looked after a six-month-old baby for a month after his parents tested positive for Covid-19 and fear of infection kept others from taking care of the infant.

On Wednesday, Dr Mary Anitha handed over Elvin to his parents, who have completed their home quarantine after being discharged from the hospital.

Elvin’s parents, hailing from Ernakulam district, are nurses at a healthcare facility in Gurgaon. Last month, his father tested positive for Covid-19 and the mother returned with Elvin to Kerala.

After reaching Kochi, the woman was in home quarantine during which she tested positive. The district child welfare committee looked for people to take care of Elvin, but the fear of infection scared many away. The families of the parents did not turn up either.

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Mary said, “On June 14, the child welfare committee approached me… By the time the issue reached me, the baby had lived with his mother for several days after she tested positive and his chances of getting infected were very high.”

A clinical psychologist, Mary runs an organisation for differently-abled children in Kochi.

The doctor said that without a second thought, she offered to look after the baby. “I discussed the issue with my family only after expressing my willingness to take care of the baby.’’

Maryhas three children of her own. On June 15, she went to the hospital and took the baby to an empty flat in her apartment complex. Thereafter, her children would take meals to the flat Mary and the baby were staying in and leave the food outside the door.

The doctor made video calls to Elvin’s father and mother, who were under treatment in Gurgaon and Kochi, respectively.

Elvin’s mother said they were indebted to the doctor. “The doctor was a godsend. Nobody would come forward to take care of a baby of a Covid-19 patient. I respect her as well as her family who supported her decision.’’

HC bars dharnas in lockdown

Thiruvananthapuram: Acting upon a PIL, a division bench of the Kerala High Court has directed that political organisations should not conduct protests or dharnas as such activities are against the restrictions on social gatherings issued by the Centre and the state governments during the lockdown.

The bench of Chief Justice S Manikumar said the general precautionary measures issued by the governments in the wake of Covid-19 are applicable to political parties as well. The court directive came in a petition seeking derecognition of political parties which hold protest marches, dharns and processions violating lockdown restrictions. —ENS

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