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Police question parents of 15-year-old surgeon

/ Source: The Associated Press

Police have questioned the parents — both doctors — of a 15-year-old boy who allegedly carried out a Caesarean section birth under their watch in southern India, a government official said Monday.

An Indian Medical Association chapter in the southern state of Tamil Nadu said last week that Dr. K. Murugesan showed them a video recording of his son, Dhileepan Raj, performing a Caesarean section in an apparent bid to gain a spot in the Guinness Book of World Records as the youngest surgeon.

The video showed Murugesan anesthetizing the patient before the boy started the operation in his father’s maternity hospital in Manaparai city, said Venkatesh Prasad, secretary of the association.

Since then unconfirmed media reports have said that the parents have denied that any such surgery took place. But Prasad told The Associated Press that authorities have started an investigation.

The family could not be reached for comment Monday.

“The parents were both questioned by the police today,” said S. Pandayan, a spokesman for the Tiruchirappalli district where Manaparai is located. He did not say what the result of the questioning was.

If the charges are proved, the boy’s father could be stripped of his license to practice medicine and may face criminal charges.

Murugesan told the medical association that he wanted to see his son’s name in the Guinness Book of World Records, Prasad said.

However, Amarilis Espinoza, a spokeswoman for the record book, said in an e-mail response last week to a question from the AP that the organization doesn’t monitor or endorse such feats because it would encourage the practice of “bad medicine.”

The baby that Raj delivered was born with a noticeable lump on the spinal cord, Prasad said, but added that the birth defect had nothing to do with the Caesarean surgery.