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Traditions Keeping Mother and Newborn in Hut Despite Medical Advice

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In Mallenahalli, Tumkur taluk, a woman from the Gollarhatti community, along with her newborn baby, has been residing in a temporary hut built on a farm outside the village, adhering to traditional customs. Despite efforts from medical professionals to provide modern care, the family has insisted on following their cultural practices.


The incident came to light when a doctor and staff from Bellavi Primary Health Center visited the hut on Monday after receiving information about the situation. They attempted to convince the family to admit the mother and baby to the hospital, but their efforts were unsuccessful.

“Our tradition dictates that the mother and child stay in the hut for a few more days. After that, we will bring them back to the village,” explained the elders of the Baranti family. They emphasized the importance of maintaining their cultural practices, despite the potential health risks involved.

Dr. Radhakrishna, the Administrative Medical Officer of Bellavi Primary Health Center, expressed concern over the health implications of this practice. “It is not safe for a newborn baby and mother to live in such conditions. We tried to explain the risks and the importance of proper care and hygiene, but the family remains steadfast in their tradition,” he told Prajavani.

The healthcare team provided the family with information on the kangaroo care model, which emphasizes close contact and proper care for newborns. However, the family chose to continue their traditional practices.

The Golla community has long adhered to the practice of staying in huts outside the village during significant life events such as menarche, monthly menstrual cycles, and childbirth. An elder from the community mentioned that in areas with a large Golla population, structures known as Krishna Kutira are constructed on the outskirts of villages, where women stay for three to five days during these times.

This situation highlights the ongoing challenge of balancing cultural traditions with modern medical practices to ensure the health and well-being of vulnerable community members.

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