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For illustrative purposes only. Gender discrimination remains a matter of concern in Jharkhand state, considered very backward in matter of development indicators. Image Credit: Pexels

Patna: A hapless woman in Jharkhand has stolen a newborn baby boy from a government hospital unable to bear frequent taunts from her in-laws for not having a male child. The woman has three daughters.

Anisha Khatun, wife of Iqbal Ansari from Chatra district of the state, went to a local hospital early Saturday and quietly fled the scene after lifting the baby. The baby’s mother who had apparently gone to the washroom raised an alarm after finding the baby missing. Hearing her cries, the woman’s brother ran out and found a lady walking with something in her arm. The woman started running when he asked her to stop.

Hearing his cries, some morning walkers chased the fleeing woman and caught her. During the search, a baby wrapped in clothes was found in her arms. She instantly confessed her guilt out of fear of being assaulted.

“We have arrested the woman for stealing the baby and an investigation is underway,” local police official Luv Kumar said.

A matter of concern

During interrogation, the woman told the police that she was compelled to steal the boy since her in-laws had been mentally torturing her frequently for not bearing a male child.

“I was very upset as there used to be quarrels in the house almost daily. So I went to steal the child thinking I won’t have to listen to my in-laws’ taunts anymore,” the woman told the police.

It was left unexplained how stealing a baby would have solved her issue with her in-laws.

Meanwhile, Rajani Devi is very happy to get back her son who was born on June 1. “I am a mother, so I can feel her agony. But it is not right to take this wrong path in the desire of the son,” said Rajani.

Gender discrimination remains a matter of concern in Jharkhand, considered very backward in matter of development indicators despite government efforts. The sex-ratio of Jharkhand is 941 females per 1,000 males.

“It is necessary to bring changes in people’s mindset and create awareness among them. Everyone should understand that a boy and a girl are equal and a person becomes great through his/her deeds,” Jharkhand governor Droupdi Murmu told a function recently.

Citing the Fourth World Conference on Women convened by the United Nations, she said it is not possible to achieve human rights and social justice without equality between men and women.