A mother who went into hospital expecting to give birth to one baby was more than a little surprised just over half an hour later when she had five daughters.

When Manita Singh was rushed into hospital at just 26 weeks pregnant after she began to complain of labour pains, she feared the worse.

The 25-year-old had lost her first son shortly after he was born two years earlier, and she now faced the prospect of losing this baby as well.

These five little girls, each weighing 1.5kg, were born within half an hour of each other in eastern India

At 11am, the doctors at the local government hospital in Ambikapur, in Chhattisgarh in eastern India,┬ádelivered the first little girl naturally at 11am – swiftly followed by her four sisters.

Manita’s delighted husband Manish said: ‘I am extremely grateful to God for blessing us with not one but five children.

‘We were heartbroken when we lost our first child, a son, immediately after birth two years ago. I believe God has compensated the loss.

Mother Manita Singh had no idea she was expecting any more than one child when she went into labour at just 26 weeks pregnant, but her husband has revealed they are both delighted with their new brood

Dr Tekam, who led the team of doctors in the delivery, said: ‘This is the first case in my career where I have delivered five babies through normal birth.

‘We are very happy for the parents but the babies are under supervision as they all are premature.

‘While they are healthy, we cannot say if they will survive.

‘However, we are doing every bit to save them.’