UAE | Crime

Maid refused holiday 'suffocated baby as she slept'

Parents return home to find only child dead, autopsy shows girl was suffocated

  • By Bassma Al Jandaly, Community and Crime Correspondent
  • Published: 18:29 January 21, 2014
  • Gulf News

Dubai: A housemaid was arrested for murdering her sponsors’ baby by suffocating her with a wet rag as she slept, a top police official said.

The official said the baby’s Indian parents in their 30s, who live in the Al Qusais area, returned from work on Sunday to find their only child dead.

“They thought that it was a natural death but relatives insisted they take their dead baby to the hospital,” the official added.

The girl’s body was transferred to Dubai Police’s forensic medicine department. An autopsy found the cause of death to be suffocation.

The police official said the housemaid, who is in her 20s, is suspected of using a wet rag to suffocate the girl while she slept.

The official said CID launched an investigation and questioned the housemaid who said that she had been upset because her sponsors had prevented her from going on vacation to her home country.

The housemaid told police her sponsor refused to let her go because the child’s mother had started her new job five months earlier and he was unable to take leave from work.

“We suspected that the housemaid murdered the child,” police said.

Police said the housemaid initially denied having anything to do with the death of the child. Later on she confessed to the crime and said she thought the baby’s death would enable her to take leave.

The housemaid is being detained at Al Qusais Police Station and the case has been transferred to the public prosecution.

Comments (32)

  1. Added 17:06 January 22, 2014

    When I read all the comments I would just like to tell you all: How ladies in Europe handle kids and job?! Did you ever think about? For us in Germany it is a shame to not be able to handle both. We neither have a housemaid nor a nanny, and both, wife and husband are working. How we handle? With the support of the nurseries, which are open from 06.00 am - 06.00 pm, with part time jobs and with a paid maternity/paternity leave of minimum 1 year, up to 3 years. And don't tell me now, a mother has to stay home, it is nonsense. I love my parents, my parents love me, I didn't miss anything in my life! So stop this stupid argumentation that the Mom has to stay home and she does not love her kid etc etc.

    Claudia, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

  2. Added 16:55 January 22, 2014

    No mom/parent would like to leave their young ones with a maid or a baby sitter. Like Ayesha says, one person's salary is not enough to run a family in Dubai. Most of the expatriates are paid based on the country they come from. I am due in 2 weeks and I am already worried where will I leave my 45 days newly born baby, as I need to return back to work after maternity leave. The UAE labor law for new moms is not good. My company wants me back after 45 days. In UK you at least get 6 months leave. Also I was thinking of sponsoring my mother, but that's not possible as the labor law to sponsor single parent is impossible and also the requirements have changed which I am unable to fulfill. What can a mother do then???? I appeal to authorities to change the UAE labor law on Maternity and Parents so that these kind of incidents can be avoided..

    Nazia, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

  3. Added 15:42 January 22, 2014

    It looks like open season to blame the poor and helpless maids for each and everything and anything at all. Its like something is not okay at home just blame the maid. This maids are kept more like prisoners and slaves in the house and how can you expect them to perform a proper and decent job

    Jonathan butler, Doha, Qatar

  4. Added 15:06 January 22, 2014

    Horrible ... cant even imagine the parents pain .. May the almighty give them power to withstand this tough time.. I dont know how can any parents can leave their child to such unknown people. They could have brought their parents .. at the end of the day .. you earn for your kids well being .. please dont put your kids life in danger while you make money. People learn the hard way for working couples let it be a warning.. Yes your current maid is doing good deed .. but at the end of the day the fact remains same .. they work for money and situation force people to think beyond worse !!!

    Murali, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

  5. Added 14:52 January 22, 2014

    the women of todays generation are more concerned about their career. i dont say that women should not work but they should wait till a child attain a certain age. how can one rely on others leaving a portion of your heart to look after .a child is a mother responsibility and should be under her love.

    naziahoda, sharjah, United Arab Emirates

  6. Added 14:33 January 22, 2014

    There is risk for every working couple whether they keep our children in babysitting, maid etc. But God only takes care of them. But ofcourse we need to see the priorities in our life. For some it is OK to have money, luxuries in life and this what makes them happy. Thats why some opt for no children and it is good to do so then to have tragedy like this. But for couples with children, children should be given first preference, of course we have to sacrifice for luxuries of life. Whats the use if you have lot of wealth and you loose your child. Its time to learn the lesson. Heartfelt sympathies to these parents

    Sunita, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

  7. Added 14:07 January 22, 2014

    This is a very unfortunate incident. May God give the parents the strength to overcome their grief. Having said that it is not fair for the readers to judge the parents decision to both work. Its not an easy decision for any parent to make. Please avoid posting messages that will make them feel more gulity.

    padma, dubai, United Arab Emirates

  8. Added 14:03 January 22, 2014

    When men are unable to do the needful the women need to step in. But unfortunately it is not appreciated since a woman is always required to sacrifice MORE, work more...... The maids these days are very dangerous and demanding. Rather do without them if possible...

    Fatma J, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

  9. Added 14:00 January 22, 2014

    Well said Ayesha...and yes you are lucky to have a good maid too. There are families who can afford to offer lavish gifts to their maids. Fair enough..but what about the rest. There are maids (especially ones who have prior exposure working in UAE) who throw all kind of tantrums from comparing the house to the commodities you have. They prefer working with families residing in villas or the ones with huge apartments. They wont accept a package of less then 2000-2500 AED + the allowance. They choose families based on nationality. Some even comment if you are an Asian expat comparing you to Europeans and what they can afford and pay. Its not about what the sponsor pays or agrees to as per the law. Its as per the rules set by these 'Maids' Read the number of maid ads on popular web portals. The discrimination is pretty obvious. I have had personal experience with two of them one who even went to the extent of blackmailing and manipulating us for the money. We ended up not only spending for her visa but also for her ticket to pack her off. Sadly there is no law to provide justice to sponsors like us. My heartfelt condolences to the family. They lost something so precious. May the lord be with them in this toughest times.

    Rithika, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

  10. Added 13:42 January 22, 2014

    nobody has the right to do what she did to the innocent child, she should be hanged for the crime. And a caution to those people who employ a maid, gone are the days of SLAVERY!! treat your maid as a human being, Please.

    Shamsher Khan, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

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