A baby with two faces was born in a northern Indian village, where she is doing well, her father said Tuesday.
The baby, Lali, apparently has an extremely rare condition known as craniofacial duplication, where a single head has two faces. Except for her ears, all of Lali’s facial features are duplicated – she has two noses, two pairs of lips, and two pairs of eyes.
“My daughter is fine – like any other child,” said Vinod Singh, 23, a poor farm worker.
Rural India is deeply superstitious and the little girl is being hailed as a return of the Hindu goddess of valor, Durga, a fiery deity traditionally depicted with three eyes and many arms.
Up to 100 people have been visiting Lali at her home every day to touch her feet out of respect, offer money and receive blessings, Singh told The Associated Press.
The girl has found easy acceptance in Kumar’s large, extended family, who say they have no plans to consult doctors to check if the girl can receive treatment or corrective surgery.
“The doctor said everything is normal when she was born. So where’s the need to get medical help?” said the child’s father.
“She’s fed through one mouth and sucks her thumb with the other. We use whichever mouth is free to feed her,” the 24-year-old Kumar told AFP, adding she is eating and breathing normally.
Doctors said it was an extremely rare case, with the girl having two skulls joined together, and that separating them was out of the question.
But doctors said the girl should be examined thoroughly to study the possibility of c͟o͟m͟p͟l͟i͟c͟a͟t͟i͟o͟n͟s͟.
“Clearly the child is in no immediate danger but it has to be checked whether the oral and nasal cavity and other passages” are functioning correctly, pediatrician Gupta said.
Two-year-old Lakshmi Tatma’s case captivated the nation last year as domestic and international media focused on her complicated surgery performed in southern Bangalore city in November.