In India, it is unfortunately still incredibly common to just ‘dispose’ of female children, which is exactly what happened in this case in the Jajpur district of Odisha.
A child actually noticed baby feet sticking out of the ground. He managed to alert his parents and authorities, who rushed to the scene. They were able to dig out the little girl, who was just born, and still covered in afterbirth. They immediately knew why the parents had done it.
In India, many families are too poor to take care of their daughters. Sons are allowed to work, and will get married and receive a dowry, whereas, with girls, the parents have to give up a dowry. Many still unfortunately kill their children because of that.
Luckily, due to quick thinking authorities, the newborn was saved, and is under observation. They have named her Dharitri, a Sanskrit word that means “the earth.”
Authorities were able to track down her parents and arrest them. The father admitted to burying the newborn alive.
AmericaNow also reports:
The girl is expected to be handed over to the state-run welfare committee when she is discharged from the hospital.
According to NDTV, police have arrested the baby girl’s father after he confessed to burying her alive.
Ramesh Chandra Basantia, 35, is suspected to be the girl’s father. He allegedly buried the newborn baby in a field near his house, just two hours after his wife gave birth.
Basantia is a part-time driver who already has four children, according to Jajpur Superintendent of Police Anup Kumar Sahu. Because his house is in an isolated location, nobody witnessed the burial of the girl.
The Daily Mail reports that, prior to Basantia’s arrest, local police officer Jyoti Prakash Panda said, “Chances are it was a case of female [infanticide] and it is clear that the accused wanted to kill her.”
Female infanticide, the deliberate killing of female babies, is more common than male infanticide, according to the BBC. In places where female infanticide is common, men are responsible for their family’s social and economic stability, thus making male the preferred sex of a new family member.