Maharashtra: Govt cracks down on sex determination tests
Posted on: 10:45 AM IST Mar 08, 2013
Mumbai: Even as the entire world celebrates Women's Day on March 8, there are several people in India who have no qualms in killing a girl child or aborting a female foetus. Reports of mother carrying female foetuses being forced to undergo abortion have been reported from several cities and towns of Maharashtra following which the Maharashtra Medical Council (MMC) has acted against 21 doctors who are alleged to be involved in sex determination tests, which they have been conducting by flouting the rules under the Pre-Conception and Pre-Natal Diagnostic Techniques (PCPNDT) Act.
Following an investigation the Medical Council has suspended 21 doctors in nine districts of Maharashtra. However, the investigation also reveals that despite the action against doctors sex determination tests are being carried out in the state and several government doctors too are involved in it. A total of 45 doctors are being investigated in connection with sex determination tests. The investigations are taking place in Wardha, Yavatmal, Beed, Pune, Jalgaon, Ahmednagar, Sangli, Satara and Solapur and many of the accused have been caught.
Till June 2012 the medical department has raised and sealed more than 400 ultrasound centres, which were allegedly involved in sex determination tests. According to the Maharashtra Medical Council President Dr Kishor Taori said that till now 21 doctors have been suspended and warned that those involved in sex determination tests would not be spared.
But the falling sex ratio also shows that the government has been slow in acting against errant doctors. According to the health department every district has a helpline and a close watch is being kept over doctors. But racket is so huge and well entrenched that the government is finding it hard to eliminate it. Maharashtra Health Minister Suresh Shetty admitted that several government doctors were also involved and pointed out that action has been taken against 45 doctors.