The bodies of around 24 babies were found in a blood-stained bag in a pond in India in what police suspect were illegal abortions performed at local nursing homes.
“As many as 24 foetuses, inside a container covered with a sack, were found near a pond in Habra under North 24 Paraganas district on Friday,” the Indian Express reported. “Police suspect that nursing homes involved in illegal abortions may have dumped the bodies.”
“The blood-stained sack was first spotted by locals when they gathered to catch fish from the pond at Mogra at 4.30 pm. When they opened it, they found containers filled with foetuses,” said a police officer. Local authorities said they have made arrests in connection with the gruesome discovery.
Another officer reported told the Indian Express that unfortunately, illegal abortions have become all too common in many areas throughout India.
“There are many illegal [abortion] centres that have mushroomed in these areas over a period of time. These foetuses may have been left by them. They have been sent for forensic examination,” said another officer.
“According to sources, such abortion centres are growing in numbers in areas such as Habra, Ashoknagar, Gaighata and Baduria. Police suspect that NGOs, nursing homes, doctors and middlemen colluded to dispose of foetuses,” the Express added.
Abortions, particularly sex-selective terminations targeting unborn girls, is prevalent throughout India, particularly in areas that still consider female children to be less valuable than boys. Experts estimate that India has 63 million fewer women than it should have thanks to sex-selective abortion and infanticide.