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India’s dying mothers

India has abnormally high numbers of maternal mortality

A poor health care system and lack of education is severely crippling India’s struggle in reducing maternal mortality. Resorting to traditional methods might give a hope of rescuing at least some victims.

Hansa, a 22-year-old mother of two, living in Matel village in district Rajkot, Gujarat is yet another victim. Her fate was like thousands of pregnant women in India who die because of poor health care facilities.

“This was her third pregnancy”, relates her husband’s aunt. “Hansa developed some problem in the fifth month of her pregnancy and her husband came to me late in the evening asking me to come to their home.”

She says that Hansa had been bleeding for 4 days and they put her in a ‘Chakda’ (make shift three wheeler) having no


19.12.2011 | 23:20



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The abortion debate: A woman’s right to choose

Jannat Bibi has 12 children to look after

Steel coat hangers and opium sticks are the last resort for most women in Pakistan who want to do away with an unwanted pregnancy. Abortions are illegal in the Islamic Republic, affecting several desperate women.

38-year-old Jannat Bibi, a resident of Dawood Shah in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa in Pakistan and a mother of twelve, has finally agreed to visit a government family planning centre in her village after five abortions. Her midwife, Rozina, 54, says she is now an expert in handling her cases, despite ‘hidden fears’ about Jannat Bibi’s health.


19.12.2011 | 19:33



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