After a long legal battle, a court in Chittagong handed over Ekush, the abandoned newborn boy who was found miraculously alive inside a drain on February 21, to his new parents on Wednesday.
On March 29, Chittagong Additional Metropolitan Sessions Judge Jannatul Ferdouce, also judge of the Child Affairs Court, granted custody of Ekush to Dr Jakirul Islam and his wife Shakila Akhter.
Around 3:30pm on Wednesday, Ekush was handed over to his new parents.
Chittagong Medical College Hospital (CMCH) Neonatal Ward Assistant Registrar Dr Debasis Kumar Roy and Ward In-Charge Shikha Bhattacharia brought the baby boy from the hospital to the court room and later handed him over to the couple in the presence of the judge.
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Special Public Prosecutor MA Fayez told the Dhaka Tribune that the court had earlier asked the couple to invest in education insurance worth TK10 lakh in Ekush’s name before receiving custody of the baby.
“They recently purchased the insurance from Bank Asia by depositing an initial amount of Tk1,52,000. When they produced the bank statement before the court, Ekush was handed over to them in the presence of medical authorities as per the court’s verdict,” he added.
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Shakila Akhter, who received custody to raise Ekush, the infant who was rescued from a drain in Chittagong on February 21, 2017, was spotted holding the babyboy alongside her husband, Dr Jakirul Islam on Wednesday, April 5, 2017 FM Mizanur Rahaman/Dhaka Tribune
Fayez also told the Dhaka Tribune that the couple had renamed the boy Abdul Khaled Md Mujib Sekandar, as mentioned in the insurance documents, but the court had asked that they add “Ekush” to the name and update the insurance documents.
The couple has also been asked to present the corrected document and inform the court of Ekush’s health and wellbeing on July 5.
On February 21, some local Bangladesh Chhatra League activists had rescued the baby boy from a drain in the city’s Colonel Hat area and, with the help of Akbarshah police, had him admitted to CMCH’s Neonatal Ward.
Since then Ekush has been under the custody of the CMCH authorities.