Doctors pronounced a baby dead but he started moving on his way to the funeral. CC0 Creative Commons

A baby on the way to his own funeral was discovered to be alive, despite doctors at the hospital pronouncing him dead shortly after birth.

The BBC reported that the incident happened in a private facility called Max Hospital in Delhi, India. The baby’s twin was stillborn and some hours later doctors pronounced him dead too, and the pair was put into a plastic bag. But on the way to the funeral, the parents saw the living twin squirming around and rushed him to another hospital.

It was unclear whether the infant was going to be cremated or buried before the discovery that he was still alive.

The state health minister, Satyendar Jain, said on Twitter that an inquiry is underway and called it a case of “shocking criminal negligence.”

Meanwhile, hospital officials have expressed concern and put the doctor involved on leave, according to the BBC.

It is not nearly the first case of a living person mistakenly being declared dead — not even in the modern era of medical science. In Massachusetts in 2005, for example, a woman had been pronounced dead of suicide but before she was buried, a funeral director “heard a gurgling noise coming from the body bag” and took action to rescue her, according to ABC.

There are several different medical conditions that can make a person appear dead, and in the case of that woman and her suicide attempt, it was hypothermia; she had overdosed in a tub of water and stayed there for a long period of time. Hypothermia makes a person’s pulse weak, slows their breathing and makes them fall unconscious. If the person is cold and unresponsive enough, they will appear lifeless.

There is also bradycardia, in which the heart slows so much that, when combined with fainting, the patient will come off as dead.

Other times a person may actually be functionally dead and then come back to life. When doctors’ resuscitation efforts have failed to revive someone and then they appear to miraculously and spontaneously come back to life, it is called Lazarus syndrome, a reference to the Bible character whom Jesus brought back from the dead.