A woman migrant worker on Sunday gave birth to a girl on board a Shramik special train that was coming to Bilaspur in Chhattisgarh from Bhopal in Madhya Pradesh, health officials said.
The woman, Ishwari Yadav (23), delivered the baby around 1.50 am with help of some women passengers on the train before it reached Nagpur railway station in Maharashtra, her husband Rajendra Yadav said over the phone.
"She went into labour at midnight, following which I called the railway on the helpline number. The helpline staff said doctors will reach after the train arrives at the nearest station, which was far from there," he said.
"Then I started asking other women passengers travelling on the train if they could help me, to which they agreed," he said.
Thanks to those women, the delivery happened safely, Yadav added.
When the train reached Nagpur station around 4 am, a railway medical team came and provided assistance. They removed the umbilical cord and clamped it. Doctors also gave some medicines to my wife, and the journey resumed after that, he said.
"After arriving at Bilaspur railway station at 10.55 am, the mother and the newborn were rushed to Chhattisgarh Institute of Medical Sciences (CIMS) Bilaspur in an ambulance," Public Relations Officer of the institute, Dr Aarti Pandey, said.
Both of them have been kept in the isolation ward and they are fine. The rapid testing of the woman for coronavirus came out negative. However, her sample has been sent for RTPCR testing for final confirmation, she said.
Yadav, a native of Dharampura village in Mungeli, said he had gone to Bhopal after the Holi festival in March to work as a construction labourer along with his pregnant wife and a
one-and-a-half year daughter.
"Unfortunately, only three-four days after I started working, lockdown came in force. It was very difficult to arrange for food and other essentials for two months. I borrowed money from my contractor and others. Sometimes we had to manage with just water as there was no food," he said.
"The horrific experience of lockdown will continue to haunt me," he added. "As my wife's delivery date was nearing, I tried many times to return home on goods vehicles, but wasn't able to," he said.
Finally I boarded the special train at Habibganj station with the help of other labourers of my area who were also there, and finally reached here, he added.