A Kashmir woman, who was being ferried to a hospital in the northern part of the valley, to deliver a child, conceived in a car as it took the driver over an hour to cover a one-kilometer dilapidated road.
The incident has come as a stark reminder about the lack of good roads in remote parts of the Kashmir valley, The incident happened during mid-night on Sunday, when a pregnant woman from north Kashmir’s Tanmarg was being shifted to lone maternity care facility in the region.
Fortunately, the woman, who hails from Mamoosa village, had a normal deliver. “The woman and her child are safe and healthy,” says a local.
He says it was when the woman was travelling on the Mamoosa–Kunzar road, near Government High School Lalpora the woman delivered a child at 3 AM.
Her family says: “We boarded on a neighbour’s vehicle for the hospital at 2 AM, which is hardly about ONE kilometer from their residence. But, due to horrible Mamoosa-Kunzar road, it took us so long to cover such a small distance.”
The family alleges the woman was having severe labour pains and the bad road only added to her woes.
“When we were near Government High School, Lalpora at 3 AM, she gave birth to a child in car as we were still away from the hospital. Fortunately, she gave birth to a child normally but an anomalous condition.”
The roads are deteriorated to such extent that there are no transportation facilities for Mamoosa village, locals say. “Adding to our misery are private owners of sumo and minibuses ad they have suspended their services to the village,” furious locals say.
Such anomalous incidents are not new to Kashmir. Months ago, a young woman, Amreen, 21, was forced to deliver a child in a vehicle after she was sent back by the district hospital doctors in central Kashmir’s Ganderbal.
The woman went along with her husband to a government hospital for a check-up, where she was turned back by the doctor saying her due date for delivery was still some time away. The couple had then hired a taxi and started to move towards their home. Amreen developed labour pains at Chapar Gund, about four kilometres from the hospital and delivered a child in a vehicle.
Interestingly, Jammu and Kashmir received the best health care award from an Indian media group recently.
But these horrific incidents have raised serious questions on state government claims of providing quality health infrastructure and other facilities to the people.