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Baby who allegedly catches fire to be monitored by child rights activists

Rahul – the baby whose parents claim has spontaneously burst into flames four times since his birth – will continue to be monitored by child rights activists in Chennai, India until the mystery of his condition can be solved, the Times of India reported.

The Indian Council for Child Welfare (ICCW) will house the 3-month-old infant, along with his mother, in a safe place for an unspecified number of days. Though the ICCW  does not intend to investigate Rahul’s case, the organization will provide counseling for the parents to find out more about their condition and their intentions for their child.

“Nobody has been able to pinpoint the reason why Rahul suffered burn injuries,” Chandradevi Thanikachalam, ICCW general secretary, told the Times of India. “Our aim is to protect the child until a conclusion is reached, so we'll keep Rahul and his mother Rajeshwari in a place where he will also get additional protection, but only after his parents' approval.”

Rahul’s mother said the baby first caught fire at 9 days old, though there was no fire source near his body.

Since his fourth incident, Rahul has been staying at the Kilpauk Medical College Hospital, where doctors suspected he may have been suffering from spontaneous human combustion (SHC).  However, multiple tests including a chromosome test, gene analysis and skin biopsy all turned out to be normal, subsequently leading doctors to suspect abuse or that the baby was involved in an accident.

Click for more from the Times of India.