6 May : The Bombay High Court on Wednesday issued certain guidelines for government and semi-government hospitals in the state, making it mandatory to have biometric identification system for infants.
The objective is to prevent thefts of infants from hospitals and the guidelines were framed after Mumbai-based Mohan and Mohini Nerurkar lost their two-day-old baby boy from Sion Hospital in the city, which is run by Mumbai Municipal Corporation.
The guidelines say that biometric record of child’s foot prints, hand prints and birth marks must be prepared within two hours of a child’s birth.
If any hospital does not have biometric system, it will have to procure it within six months, said the division bench of Justices Ranjana Desai and Rajesh Ketkar.
Further, there will have to be round-the-clock security outside pediatric wards, and it would include female guards. Also, there would be checking of baggage while leaving hospital.
Child and mother would get identity bands, whereas the hospital staff would have badges to identify them. There would be CCTVs inside pediatric wards, the HC guidelines said.
Nerurkars’ baby was stolen by an unidentified woman who was loitering in the ward during non-visiting hours.The infant and the lady are yet to be traced and the court is monitoring police probe in the case.