Mother to be charged for infanticide

The woman is currently undergoing treatment at the psychiatric ward of the JDWNRH

The 20-year-old woman, found guilty of infanticide, is currently undergoing counselling at the psychiatric ward of the Jigme Dorji Wangchuck National Referral Hospital in Thimphu.

The woman confessed to killing the infant after giving birth and strangling the baby to death.

Meanwhile, the body of the newborn baby was found in the Central Plaza area in Olakha, Thimphu on the morning of January 25. The body of the infant was still fresh as it had not decomposed.

When the police discovered the body of the infant, both the limbs and lower abdominal of the baby were reportedly missing.

As the woman was found bleeding and required medical assessment, she was first referred to the emergency ward and then she was referred to the psychiatric ward for counseling.

The investigating officer said during her confession, the woman revealed giving birth to the baby boy on January 19 at 3:00 am. As soon as the baby was born, she strangled the baby.

When questioned by the police, the woman had said she did want the baby.

It was also revealed that the woman was unmarried and she did not disclose the details of the father to the police. But the investigating officer said that once the health of the woman improves, they will try to find out about the father.

As of now the charge levied on the mother is voluntary manslaughter.

Section 140 of the Penal Code of Bhutan states that a defendant shall be guilty of an offense of voluntary manslaughter if the defendant possess the intention to kill but without premeditated malice, acts under the violence of sudden passion occasioned by some great provocation such that a reasonable person would be induced to cause the death of other person.

The offense of voluntary manslaughter is a felony of the second degree, a minimum of which shall be nine years and a maximum of which shall be less than 15 years.

With the completion of the formalities, the body of the infant was handed to the mother and brother of the woman.

Issues related to unwanted pregnancies? Adoption? Domestic violence- call NCWC’s 24/7 toll free helpline: 1098.

Chencho Dema from Punakha