A three-year-old boy was found alone at a house in Kampung Parit Buluh in Tampin, Negri Sembilan, about 1am today by police and villagers.
Tampin district police chief Supt Hamzah Ab Razak said the toddler had been left at home by his mother since 6pm yesterday.
"Police received a report from the village chief about 12.45am after he heard cries of a child inside a dark house.
"Villagers, assisted by a police team, had to break into the locked house and saw a crying naked child," he said in a statement today.
The child did not sport any external injuries and he was fed by the police.
Initial investigations revealed that the child's mother, a local woman aged 29, had left her son alone to visit her mentally-ill mother at Felda Jelai 1, as well as her stepmother who had met with an accident.
The unemployed woman had left with her three other children from her first marriage while she did not bring the toddler as he was born out of wedlock from her relationship with an Indonesian, and she had wanted to keep the child's existence a secret from her family.
The woman's second husband, a lorry driver, was also unaware that the child was born to his wife as he thought the boy was a son of his wife's friend.
The woman had also kept her neighbours, including the village chief, in the dark about the child's existence, and his birth was also not registered with the National Registration Department.
The child is currently admitted in the Tampin Hospital for medical examination and has been taken under the care of the Social Welfare Department.
Hamzah said the woman is currently under remand until next Monday and is being probed under Section 33 of the Child Act 2001.
He also commended the village chief and the villagers for being alert of their surroundings, which resulted in the child's rescue.