The death of a sixth child in a span of nine years on Tuesday at a household in Kerala’s Malappuram has raised suspicions among locals. The Tirur Police registered an FIR to investigate the same, based on a statement from a close relative of the family.
According to police officers investigating the case, a couple residing in Chembra in Malappuram district’s Tirur lost their son, who was 93-days-old, early today morning. The infant’s death was confirmed at a private hospital in Tirur.
Previously, five children— four girls and a boy— of the couple, have died under similar circumstances in the past nine years, all reportedly of natural causes. Five of the six children died before they turned one, whereas the other child died when she was four-years-old.
On Tuesday, when the couple and the family members hurried to bury the child before conducting a postmortem, it raised suspicions among locals who alerted the police. However, the child was laid to rest before the officers could arrive. The local police, sensing an element of abnormality in the deaths of the children, proceeded to file an FIR and exhumed the body of the child for postmortem. They also inspected the household in order to collect forensic evidence.
“The preliminary postmortem report by the police surgeon indicates that it was a natural death. The internal organs have been preserved for further tests. So we will have to wait for those results,” said Malappuram SP Abdul Karim U.
The SP added that in the days to come, the police will examine medical reports of the other five children to understand how they died and whether they were taken to hospital for treatment. The relatives, as well as the couple, will also be interrogated.
Meanwhile, a relative of the couple told reporters in Tirur that all the six children had died of natural causes.
“We had even conducted the postmortem after the death of the third child. The doctor at Amrita Hospital had indicated that it could be a genetic issue. We have all the reports of the kids and there’s no ground for conjecture at all,” she said.
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