Woman in India dies trying to deliver baby herself after watching YouTube videos

The mother was found after neighbours saw blood flowing out of her room

Saptarshi Ray
Tuesday 12 March 2019 11:36
File photo of a pregnant woman
File photo of a pregnant woman

A woman and her baby died after she attempted to deliver her baby herself by watching YouTube clips, as she feared being stigmatised for being a single mother, Indian police said.

The 26-year-old unmarried woman was in the full-term of her pregnancy when she attempted self-delivery at her rented accommodation in the city of Gorakhpur in India, while watching a child delivery video online.

Both, the woman and her child, a boy, died in the process, police said on Monday.

The incident took place in the city’s Bilandpur area, under Cantonment police station, on Sunday night, station house officer Ravi Rai said.

He added that the likely reason behind her self-delivery attempt was “fear of social stigma attached to being an unmarried mother”, reported the Hindustan Times.

Rai said the matter came to light when the woman’s neighbours informed her landlord about blood flowing out of her room on Monday morning.

“Her landlord Ravi Upadhyay broke open the door and found the woman and a newborn baby boy lying dead”, said Rai.

“He immediately informed the police, who reached the site and sent the body for post-mortem.

“Her smartphone revealed that she was watching ‘how to deliver baby by self’ and other similar “safe delivery processes” on YouTube.”

A pair of scissors, a blade and some thread was found near the woman’s body.

The unnamed woman, a native of the town of Bahraich, had taken the rented accommodation just four days earlier. Her relatives were informed about the incident, who confirmed that she was unmarried, Rai said.

Unmarried women in India often face shame and social exclusion over pregnancies and feel unable to seek help from doctors for fear of exposure in the conservative country.

Apparently the woman was living in Gorakhpur for the past four years.

“After post-mortem her body was handed over to family members who have refused to lodge FIR (first information report) against anybody,” Rai said.

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