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The sex ratio in the age group of 0-6 years has improved in Surat district at 838 girls to 1,000 boys, according to Civil Registration System (CRS) data of 2014-15. As per the census data of 2011-12, there were 787 girls against every 1,000 boys in the same age group. In order to achieve a target of equal boys vs girls, the Surat district health department’s Pre-Conception and Pre-Natal Diagnostic Techniques (PC and PNDT) cell had conducted several awareness programme which resulted in the rise of birth of girls in the year 2014-15.
The cell also began policing of sex determination. The officials slapped notices on 48 organisations, including hospitals and clinics, for violating the PC and PNDT act, while 33 cases were registered against the organisation by the cell in 2014-15. Besides, the teams had also sealed sonography machines used to determine the sex of the foetus. The officials continue to conduct surprise checks at different organisations and hospitals, said Dr. Megha Mehta, district health officer.
Sources in the Surat health department said that the teams had also conducted sting operation where sex detections were carried out in different clinics and hospitals and had caught them red-handed for violating the PC and PNDT rules. Some of the doctors caught in the sting operations are Dr. Manisha Bhidkiya (Indira IVF at Laldarwaja), Dr. Geeta Mangukia (Riddhi Siddhi clinic, Varachha), Dr. Ramnik Amipara (Aai Mata hospital, Parvat Patia) and Dr. Rakesh Kapadia (clinic in Pandesara).
Dr. Mehta added: “We have carried out awareness programme under the banner of “Beti Bachao Beti Padhao” in community gatherings. Couples were made to take a vow against sex determination tests and female foeticide.”
The district health officer further said that during an event a 10 km-long banner was made where over 2.50 lakh people had signed on the it and vowed to save the girl child. “The last signature was of the then chief minister Anandiben Patel.”
“We are not satisfied with the figures and we will continue our efforts. We have fixed a target to reach 1,000 girls against 1,000 boys. The state health department had also appreciated the act and they have also instructed other districts to follow the work done by the Surat team,” she said.