Kamla was born in a remote Indian village Where conflicts between Maoists and government are long and lasting Villagers live in fear No basic healthcare, bad transportation, The instability worsens the problems No choices, childbirth is always at home – she was no exception Unfortunately her labour was prolonged Relatives tried hard to find a vehicle. Eight hours later, she arrived at our mother and child healthcare centre We tried to deliver, but the baby’s head would not pass through the pelvis The situation was grave, the womb was contracting, and the baby was hypoxic An urgent cesarean section was needed to save their lives But there was no operation equipment, no blood bank The only thing we could do was to send her to the nearest hospital Another four hours away I’ll never forget – she held my hands tightly and murmured to me before she left “Who knows, maybe I will die like this, who knows?” I kept silent but my heart was sinking. At midnight, she reached the hospital, but no suitable blood was available The operation was delayed, the baby was gone In the early morning, her uterus ruptured from prolonged contractions She lost too much blood and died as well Leaving a 3-year-old son behind. With all these ‘NO’s, Kamla’s death seems destined Similar deaths happen daily, quietly Chhattisgarh is one of the provinces with highest maternal mortality rate in India But these numbers are neglected and buried. “No, she shouldn’t die!” All these ‘NO’s shouldn’t be ignored, shouldn’t be put aside We are fuelled by our frustrations Which pushes us to meet the needs To save lives, to make lives continued We work hard to set up an operation room and blood bank We provide transport for emergency cases, improving timely referral service We promote antenatal care to remote villages by mobile clinics We do anything we can Just to prevent other Kamla, Sunita, Kavita and Laxmi From appearing on the death list when they give birth But in the end, maintaining internal peace and prosperity is the government’s responsibility Utopia? We will wait and see! Ganesh is a patron saint in Hinduism People pray to Him for his blessing In all the celebrations, with the dancing and singing for the Ganesh Festival Kamla’s funeral wail was submerged in the sound of joy But her words will linger in my mind for a long time. The Ganesh Festival is a Hindu festival. It lasts for 10 days. The date usually falls between 20 August and 22 September of each year.

Comments (1)

  • anon

    The job is still not yet done Bea-am going back in October for a second mission.Need you there to make things go -please think seriously about it.

    Aug 06, 2011

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