A Muslim dad in Kerala stumped doctors at the EMS hospital in Mukkam in Kozhikode district with a strangely adamant request -- that his wife not be allowed to breastfeed their newborn until five calls for prayer from the mosque over a period of 24 hours were completed, according to reports.
The man, who was named in media as Abu Bakr, insisted that he followed the same policy when their first child was born. He checked his wife and baby out of the hospital when the authorities tried to reason that he could not be allowed to put his newsborn's health at risk, according to NDTV.
"He plainly refused to allow his wife to breastfeed the baby. This was purely based on some superstitious belief, which he claimed was part of his religion. The baby's father was advised by a Muslim preacher that new born babies do not need to be breastfed before the calls for prayer were completed," the hospital GM, Rasika Kamar, told The News Minute.
Bakr also told the hospital that since his elder child is completely healthy despite having followed the same custom of not breastfeeding until 24 hours, he would shoulder the risk himself. The preacher allegedly told him to feed the baby honey mixed with water from Mecca till the first breastfeeding.
His wife Hafsath and her mother told the hospital authorities that they were apprehensive that Bakr would divorce her, according to the report. Bakr told TNM that he led his life according to the rules laid down by the preacher.