Case of Birth Defect Passed Off as Cow Delivering Human Baby

CLAIM

A set of images and a video are being circulated on WhatsApp with the claim that a cow has delivered a “human baby.” The images show a doctor holding a baby in his hand.

The Quint received a query on the claim being made along with the images on its WhatsApp helpline.

TRUE OR FALSE?

While the images have not been tampered with in any way, the claim with which they are being shared is false. The incident took place in Rajasthan’s Sirohi district on 19 March 2020 wherein a newly born suffered from a birth defect called anencephaly.

Further, the video in circulation is not of the same incident and took place in Udaipur.

WHAT WE FOUND OUT

On carefully looking at one of the photos, we read a text that read, “समुदाय स्वस्थ्य केंद्र.” (Translated: Community Health Centre). Consequently, we did a Google search with keywords “समुदाय स्वस्थ्य केंद्र अजीब बच्चा पैदा हुआ” and found a News18 report published in 2016.

Taking a cue from the photo, we ran a Google keyword search which led us to a 2016 news report.

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The report showed similar photos and mentioned that the location is Jaswantpura Community Health Centre in Rajasthan. The doctor seen in the pictures and in the News18 article has been identified as Dr SS Bhati.

The Quint then got in touch with Dr SS Bhati who said that the man in the video was him. He is currently posted at a community health centre in Kalandri in Rajasthan’s Sirohi.

"“These pictures are from 19 March 2020 and the delivery took place in Kalandri’s Community health centre. The claims being made on social media are false. It was actually an anencephaly case, usually occurs when there is a deficiency of folic acid.”" - Dr SS Bhati

He further mentioned that in such cases, the brain of the newly born is not fully developed and they do not survive.

As per the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention, anencephaly is a severe birth defect in which an infant is born without parts of the brain and skull. There is no known cure or a standardised procedure to treat this birth defect.

Also, regarding the video that is circulating on WhatsApp, Dr Bhati said that it’s not from the Sirohi incident and that he had no idea about it.

A keyword search on YouTube led us to a video uploaded by a local channel ‘Udaipur News’ in February that mentioned that the incident is from Udaipur.

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