Mumbai: 21st time mom-to-be will give birth at home

Beed: Lankabai Kharat, the Beed woman who is to become a mother for the 21st time, already has a son who is married, another son and nine girls. Some of her other children are also married and have five children on an average.

Nine other children died immediately after birth.The minute the health department learnt of the news, they were shocked and moved Lankabai to a government hospital. It would have been her first hospital delivery.

She has, however, refused to remain in the hospital, refusing treatment and has gone back home. "Firstly, I am pregnant. Besides, I have six kids and a husband at home to take care of. While I am here under treatment, there is nobody to take care of the children and grandchildren."

The Kharats of Beed are poor, living in a temporary shelter in Kesapuri village. Devidas Kharat and Lankabai are on their way to becoming parents for the 21st time.

On Monday, doctors conducted a few tests on Lankabai when she was first hospitalised and informed her that she would have to stay in the hospital under observation for two months.

But Lankabai expressed her inability to be hospitalised for so long, packed her bags and left. In the areas of Latur and Mazalgaon, women on an average have 10-12 children.

However, villagers of Kesapuri mostly belong to the Gopal community and travel from village to village, begging. There are many women in this community who, on an average, have 15-20 children and most survive.

The question of naming their children arises, which results in children being called names like 'bhaaji', 'bhaakri', 'gaanja', 'daaru', 'goli', banduk, 'supari' and so on.

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