Amid all the stress and tension of crowd management at the Athi Varadar festival in Kancheepuram, Wednesday morning brought happy tidings for transport corporation driver E. Ashok Kumar and his wife Vimala from Banavaram in Vellore district — the birth of their third child.
The baby, weighing three kg, was named Athivaradar by his parents since he was born at the Padhinaar Kaal Mandapam medical camp at 8.55 a.m., just after they had had finished darshan.
“Since the baby was due on August 27, I had asked my wife in the morning if she was comfortable and if she was sure she wanted to visit the crowded temple town. She said she was fine and insisted she would definitely not want to miss this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. We were standing in the queue but when people saw she was pregnant, we were allowed to finish the darshan quickly. After the darshan, she said she was in pain and we took her to the health camp where she delivered the baby,” said Mr. Kumar, whose relatives have come to Kancheepuram to see the newborn.
The delivery was conducted by R. Jansirani, a doctor attached to the Kancheepuram Government General Hospital, with the assistance of staff nurse D. Yogavalli. “The mother was brought to our camp by wheelchair since she was in pain around 8.40 a.m. Before we could shift her in an ambulance to the hospital, she went into labour. We had to deliver the baby there. In about 5-10 minutes, the police had managed to bring the ambulance to the camp,” explained Dr. Jansirani. The mother and baby were later taken to hospital.
Deputy Director (Health), Kancheepuram, T. Senthilkumar, said that at the start of the festival they had readied a delivery tray at the main camp at the Vahana Mandapam, and later made sure that similar fiacilities were made available at all the camps.
“Some two weeks ago, a lady came with labour pains and we referred her to the GH. Since it was her first delivery, it took time for the baby to come out. The delivery kits usually have 12 items including scissors and clamps for the umbilical chord,” he said. At the 46 medical camps in and around the Sri Devarajaswamy temple, 1,24,893 persons have been treated so far.