An Engineer Iran/Tehran has written the GNN asking this entity to ‘kindly circulate the facts of the tragedy of his stolen son in 1984. This is how his story was narrated via an email sent to the GNN.
“ I am Fadhil Hashmi, works as an engineer in UAE. I am trying to uncover the truth of kidnapping my son for some 20 years.
Our son was born health in an Iranian Hospital in 1984. Three days later I was told that my son was dead. Six years ago I opened his grave, but did not find my son’s body.
December 24, 1984, I and my wife were living in Iran-my wife home country. When she went into labour, I took her to Sajjad Hospital in Tehran, where she delivered a healthy baby, according to medical reports.
We choose name Mohammad for our son, but it was not made official on any documents.
After the delivery the baby was taken away and kept on a different floor at the hospital. My son was not given to his mother for feeding. My wife was discharged by Dr. Tabatabie the same day and we were advised to keep the baby in the hospital for a few days.
I used to visit the baby daily and nobody told me my son was ill. On the third day I went to the hospital and was told me to wait for a doctor, Dr. Mohammad Azghandi told me my son had heart and brain problems. I was then given the dreaded news: My son had died.
I took the doctor’s word for it and I did not question the claim that my son was dead. I did not ask to see my son’s body because it was traumatic.
Eleven years after the alleged death of my son, I read reports about newborns being kidnapped from hospitals in Iran. “That is when I started to doubt what I was told about my son’s death.”
And that was the first step in my 20 years’ struggle to find out if my son is alive somewhere. I had filed a court case against the hospital, claiming that I had not been given evidence of my son’s death. The court ordered police to investigate.
“When we went to the hospital, there was no death certificate nor was there anything to prove he was dead, except a notice of death that was not fully filled out issued by Tehran cemetery. The notice was issued eight days after the day I was informed my son died.”
The death notice did not have the baby’s date of death, gender, parents’ names or the name and signature of the person who handled the body. The document also showed that the cause of death was that he was a “premature baby”. This is untrue and contradicts the initial report that the baby was a “normal newborn”.
The next stop was the cemetery where the fake death of notice was issued and the baby was supposedly buried. When we checked the records, we found out that another baby was buried in the same grave as our son’s. For the same grave of my son another baby with surname “salaeh abadi” was also written in the records.
The court found the hospital not guilty due to lack of evidence.
Documents issued by Iranian Ministry of Health a report that highlighted the discrepancies in the hospital’s paperwork. The ministry recommended there be further investigations. It said “he should pursue the case with judicial and police authorities”.
I requested that my son’s body be exhumed, but the request rejected and the case was closed in 1997.”
Once the case was closed the doctor who was implicated, told my number of times my child had not died.
The doctor told me this because he thought the case was closed and would never be reopened.
An Iranian newspaper Etemaad reported that a woman was arrested following multiple complaints to police from mothers whose newborns were stolen. A 30-year-old-widow was arrested. She confessed to stealing more than 70 babies and selling them to rich families after faking their documents with the help of employees at the Iranian Department of Civil Status.
This report among others, confirmed my doubts that my son is not dead.
I attempted to reopen the case and requested exhumation. I received approval and when they opened the grave, they found only one skeleton.
“Representatives from a genetics lab took samples from the skeleton, but due to poor technology, they could not get any results. However, when they compared size of the bones with my son’s birth record, they found that the skeleton in the grave was bigger than my son’s so it could not have been his. Forensics also confirmed the results.”
Documents showed that my son was 44-centimeter long and the circumference of his head was 34cm. On the other hand, the skeleton that was found in the grave was 50cm long. The circumference of the head was 37cm.
Investigators had also opened an adjacent grave by mistake and found it empty. Papers showed that there was a body buried there. This brings the cemetery’s records into question.
The genetics center in Iran re-evaluated the DNA sample from the grave following a letter from court. The research center now had advanced technology, which tested the DNA samples. Tests proved that the DNA of the skeleton found in the grave did not match my wife DNA.
But even these findings were not taken seriously and the case was frozen.
I hope my son will read news reports and realize that may be he was this missing baby and try to contact me.
“When a child is not blood-related to a family, even if he is never told he isn’t, he might feel it. May be he will realise he does not look like his family, his blood-type is different or something.
The child might be keeping these feelings to himself, so I am getting the story out so if he is out there he can reach us.”
My wife, her health has suffered greatly because of this incident. When she was told her son died, she became depressed and had to go on medication.
“It got worse when we realised that he can be alive, she have been on strong medication ever since and she have not been able to have a good night’s sleep.” she takes sleeping aids to help her sleep.
She always felt he was alive. “It’s not easy for a mother to know her son is alive and not knowing anything about him … I never lose hope that one day I will see him.”