Local support for stir against PCPNDT Act provisions

The act demands any clerical mistake in records to be considered a criminal offence resulting in confiscation of ultrasound machine.

By: Express News Service | Pune | Updated: April 14, 2015 9:36 am

The central body of the Indian Radiological and Imaging Association (IRIA) and the Federation of Obstetricians and Gynaecological Society of India (FOGSI) have distanced themselves from the agitation of shutting down sonography machines for a day in protest against the PCPNDT Act.

The agitation, which Indian Medical Association (IMA) is supporting, has the backing of gynaecologists, cardiologists and ophthalmologists at the district units of IRIA and FOGSI. They will join the protest against provisions that recommend harsh punishment even for minor “clerical” mistakes.

Share This Article
Related Article

On Monday, cardiologists, ophthalmologists, gynaecologists and other doctors who use ultrasound machines met under the umbrella of Pune Sonologists Association and decided to participate in the stir.

Cardiologist Dr Jagdish Hiremath said use of ultrasound machine was vital to his profession. “We registered the machine as per PC-PNDT Act. The Act requires giving monthly reports on patients’ details and others and if there is a clerical mistake, it is treated as a criminal offence and the machine is sealed. That is unfair,” Hiremath said. Convenor of the association and radiologist Dr Viren Kulkarni said doctors were against the determination of sex of foetus.

Kulkarni said that of the 523 cases registered against doctors under the PC-PNDT Act, the majority relate to non-maintenance of records. Form F is to be filled for every pregnant woman who undergoes sonography and any error in that is treated as a criminal offence, Kulkarni said adding that the credibility of doctors has been questioned simply because court cases have been slapped on them for not properly filling the forms.

The IMA has supported the token shutdown and demanded that the Act be amended. Dr Jayesh Lele, president elect of the Maharashtra unit of IMA said. “We feel patients, our referring physicians, media and the general public need to be made aware of these issues. For this we are observing a ‘Sonography Shut Down’ day on April 15,” Kulkarni said adding that there will be no sonography examinations in private clinics and diagnostic centres in Pune district.

The decision to suport the strike was taken at IMA’s working committee meeting in Delhi on Saturday. The IRIA central unit decided not to participate.

Dr Jignesh Thakker, president of IRIA, said that they had talks with Health Minister Dr Deepak Sawant who assured them of taking up the matter. “We are not participating in any protest. It will be a workday like any other day. The state health minister has agreed to look into points raised by us. When the minister is already working on our demands, why should we protest?” Dr Thakker said. IRIA has 16,000 members in India.

Dr P Shah, former president of FOGSI said there were 30,000 members across India and the local level units had set up a panel of women activists, legal experts and others to find whether PC-PNDT Act is being followed or not. “We are doing our best to ensure the Act is followed. But severe punishment for medical person who may have made a clerical mistake by incorrectly filling the form is unfair. There need to be graded punishments and Act has to be amended.”

For all the latest Pune News, download Indian Express App

  1. M
    M. C.
    Sep 17, 2016 at 1:28 pm
    District Appropriate Authority Who r inspecting these Ultrasounds centers/clinics every month r checking the working of centers/clinics, should ensure the proper and complete Maintinence of all records( including Form F, display of board, wearing of Aprons etc) and that should be their responsibility and one of the duty of DAA, specially for those centers/ clinics which r runs by the non medicos persons and r registered by the DAA.If by repeated warnings or by Show cause notices,to the clerical staff, record is not maintained up to their satisfaction, these centres / clinics should be closed down, after giving sufficient warnings to the staff. The appropriate action should be taken and responsibilities taken, should be the duty of DAA.Only in extreme cases DAA may go to the court.Other wise the the responsibilities of such minor clerical mistakes in maintaining the records should be of DAA. In such cases Doctors/ Radiologists should not be punished.
    1. K
      Kusuma Kumari
      Jan 19, 2016 at 5:47 am
      PNDT act is agood made in good faith to prevent female feticide. Its not meant to har anyone. India has the highest maternal mortality rate. You cant expect Gynecologists to waste their precious time by filling FORMS. No one should be hared under this law, law is meant to protect everyone in the country/
      1. S
        Apr 14, 2015 at 10:41 pm
        PC PNDT act lost its essence .it has become more of a haring act . why form are needed to be filled when Decoys are used to nab the erring persons.
        1. S
          sandeep s
          Apr 14, 2015 at 9:26 am
          yes, the PCPNDT law is draconian & urgently needs to be amended! I urge doctors from all specialities to support the one day strike wheartedly.