A woman went into labour and delivered a baby boy while travelling by launch from Dhaka to Barishal. The launch authorities subsequently rewarded the boy and his parents with free travel privileges for life.
Jhumur Begum, the wife of Harisur Rahman from Jamalpur, gave birth onboard the Prince Awlad-10 around 1:00 am on Friday.
The vessel was in the middle of its journey at the time, said its superviser Zillur Rahman, reports bdnews24.com.
Harisur works in a chicken shop in Narayanganj, while Jhumur is a native of Barishal Sadar's Sholna village.
Jhumur's due date was still three weeks away and so she dediced to travel to her village to be with her family. This is her second child.
"The woman was on the first deck of the launch when it left Sadarghat for Barishal. Around 9:30 pm, she started to have labour pain. We offered her a cabin for her convenience," said Zillur.
“But she was not in a position to walk and take the stairs to go to the cabin. So she stayed back on the deck. Later, we asked the male passengers there to leave. Another woman and a nurse from Barishal Medical College Hospital helped her give birth to her child."
Jhumur was accompanied by her brother and his wife, said Hridoy Khan, the vessel's assistant superviser.
When the launch docked at the Barishal river port around 5 am on Friday, passengers flocked to take photos and videos of the newborn, Hridoy said.
The baby couldn't even open his eyes properly as camera flashes went off.
Jhumur managed to evade the enthusiastic mob and get off the vessel around 7:30 am.
As he was born on the launch, the baby and his parents will be able to travel for free for life, said Hridoy. "On behalf of Awlad Shiping Lines Director Md Juboraj, the child was given Tk 10,000 in cash as a gift."