Heroic Indian boatman is rewarded after finding baby girl floating along the river Ganges in Ghazipur City

 Heroic Indian boatman is rewarded after finding baby girl floating along the river Ganges in Ghazipur City

A baby girl has been found by a boatman floating along the river Ganges. Aged just three weeks, the baby was laid on top of a red blanket and was found in a brightly coloured wooden box with a note inside calling her “Daughter of the Ganga.” Alongside this was also a horoscope card that listed the baby girl’s date and time of birth.

Rescued after cries heard from the riverbank

Onlookers took videos of the girl’s rescuer Chaudhary as he cradled the tiny baby while onlookers gathered at the riverbanks in Sadar Kotwali, a locality in Ghazipur City. He heard the baby crying from the riverbank. Chaudhary then took the newborn baby to his home, where his relatives offered to raise the girl.

Government and police intervention

Later on, however, some locals informed the authorities about the baby girl’s rescue, and police officers then went to the rescuer’s house to put the girl into state care. Officials reported that the child was healthy and suffered no ill health as a result of her ordeal. It was also reported that her Indian boatman rescuer would receive benefits, including a house for this heroic rescue.

The Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh, Yogi Adityanath, posted on Twitter: “Owing to the token of gratitude, Chaudhary will benefit from all eligible government schemes. The government of Uttar Pradesh will make arrangements for the upbringing of the child.”

Officials launch an investigation

An investigation has been launched to discover how the baby ended up floating in the Ganges. Officials announced that the perpetrators would be taught a tough lesson for their inhumane act.

Problems with baby girls in rural India

The Indian media regularly reports stories of infant girls being left outside of shelters and hospitals. There have been many campaigns that aim to change people’s views on having baby girls, but the truth is that they are still viewed as a burden (financially) by many impoverished families in rural areas. This is because these families have to pay expensive dowries when the girls are married.

In India, sex-selective IVF and abortions are illegal yet remain commonplace. In the UN’s 2020 State of World Population report, there have been 45.8 million ‘females missing’ in the country over the last half a century.

Rakhi Malhotra

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