By Aamir Bashir @Aamir_Here

A 10-MONTH-OLD baby in India has weighed in at an astonishing 18.7kg (2st 13lbs) - making her one of the heaviest children in the world for her age

Scroll down for the full story

Videographer / Director: Arkaprava Ghosh
Producer: Aamir Bashir, Nick Johnson
Editor: Sonia Estal

Aliya's parents say their daughter has a mystery condition which leaves her constantly hungry

Baby Aliya, whose parents live in a remote village in the Indian state of Jharkhand, weighs the same as an average six-year-old girl.

Aliya was born at a relatively large 4kg (9lbs) but started rapidly piling on the pounds once she hit the four month mark. 

Doctor Krishan Chugh measures Aliya's ever-expanding stomach

Her mother Shabana, 25, said: "A few months after her birth, she starting gaining weight. 

"We had to buy her a new pair of clothes every two weeks because the old ones become too tight for her." 

The enormous weight has put baby Aliya's life in danger but the family have lacked the financial means to get their daughter the best medical care. 

Baby Aliya wails as she lies on the weighing scales at the hospital

Her father, Mohammad Saleem, 28, said: "We have tried our best, but we could only afford to take her to the local hospital. 

"The doctors in the village could not tell us clearly what she is suffering from.

"We took Aliya to a doctor in Ranchi. After the check up the doctor suggested that we go to another city, but we couldn’t afford that so we didn’t take her."

Baby Aliya is calm as she is bottlefed by her mother Shabana Parveen
A smiling ten-year-old Farmana Khatun, Aliya's cousin, struggles to hold on to the huge ten-month-old

However, Aliya's parents recently managed to get a consultation at Fortis Hospital on the outskirts of Delhi in a bid to try and get to the bottom of their daughter's gigantic weight gain. 

Dr Krishan Chugh, head of paediatrics at Fortis Hospital, said: "This is the heaviest baby at 10 months of age that I have seen. 

"I have seen 10kg-plus, 12kg-plus babies in the past. But this is way above the rest. Over 18 kilograms is an extreme weight figure."

Despite her size, other children in the neighbourhood love playing with Aliya

According to World Health Organisation (WHO) guidelines, the average weight of a 10-year-old in the UK is 8.5kg - less than half Aliya's weight. 

"This could be case of morbid obesity or even a hormonal imbalance. But we need to conduct some tests on her before making a proper diagnosis," Dr Chugh said. 

Larger than life: Aliya towers over a one-year-old girl from her extended family's neighbourhood

"The treatment depends on the diagnosis that we make. There are some disorders that can be treated. 

"As far as the reversal of this weight gain is concerned, that would depend on when we find a cause for it."

Aliya's giant frame poses problems for mum Shabana, who struggles to hold her in her lap for very long. 

Despite being less than a year old, Aliya consumes three times more food than an average child her age

She said: "She has become very heavy. My husband comes home very late from work. 

"So all through the day, I have to do household chores and also look after Aliya. It is difficult because she cannot even sit still on her own.

"She keeps crying throughout the day. She wakes up at night abruptly and also she cannot breathe properly." 

Shabana and Saleem have another son - five-year-old Ali - who is a regular weight but has been unable to attend school due to their financial difficulties.

Tragically their older daughter, Simran, died at just one and a half years old after gaining weight in a similar fashion to Aliya. 

Aliya flanked by her father Mohammad Saleem and mother Shabana Parveen

Saleem said: "Simran had breakfast in the morning. I left for work after that. I got a call that Simran was not well and blood was coming out of her mouth. 

"We rushed her to the hospital the doctors told us that her nerves had been damaged and she has passed away."

Shabana added: "We are scared. Simran kept gaining weight all the time. Just like her, Aliya is also growing. 

"So if we leave her untreated, we fear for the worst."

Aliya's increasing weight is making the parents nervous about their own future too. 

Her daily food intake, according to Shabana, is three times that of a normal child - putting a severe strain on the family's finances. 

"We have limited means, so there are instances when I have to borrow money from relatives or friends to feed the family and Aliya," said Saleem, who works as a tailor and earns less than £3 a day.

But despite her ever-increasing weight, Aliya is the favourite baby in the village. 

"Everybody in the village loves her. Kids also come and play with her. But very few can lift her," said a smiling Shabana.