Even as the government continues its crackdown on pre-natal sex determination tests in the country, enforcement agencies in the capital have filed cases against 54 diagnostic clinics for non-registration. With this, Delhi has the second highest number of non-registered diagnostic clinics in the country, only after Maharashtra.
According to the Union Ministry of Health, of the 294 cases that have been filed for non-registration of diagnostic clinics by the enforcement agencies till March 2017, 22 per cent were from Delhi. While Maharashtra saw 74 cases, 41 were registered from Haryana and 31 from Bihar. The submission was made by Union Minister of Health J P Nadda Friday in the Lok Sabha.
“As per quarterly progress reports submitted by states/ UTs, 103 court cases were filed during 2014-15, as many as 190 during 2015-16 and 133 in 2016-17. Till March 2017, as many as 2,371 cases were pending before various criminal courts while 1,132 cases had been decided under the The Pre-Conception and Pre-Natal Diagnostic Techniques (Prohibition of Sex Selection) Act, 2003 – resulting in 416 convictions and 114 suspension/ cancellation of medical licences of the convicted doctors,” the minister told Parliament.
In May, a radiologist and three others were booked for allegedly conducting pre-natal sex determination tests at her clinic in south Delhi’s Jangpura. Fifteen such raids have been conducted in the city in the last two years, officials said. To clamp down on this, the Delhi government has proposed a Rs 2 lakh reward for those with information on unregistered ultrasound centres, and Rs 50,000 each to the informer and the decoy following a successful raid.
According to data, till September 2016, as many as 6,188 premises were raided in Delhi under the PC&PNDT Act. At least 93 ongoing cases are being heard in court for violation of the Act. In 17 other cases, the court has awarded convictions. The PC&PNDT Act makes it illegal to determine the sex of the unborn child or use sex-selection technology.
At present, the Centre has constituted the National Inspection and Monitoring Committee to see the implementation of the PC&PNDT Act at the ground level. Along similar lines, states/ UTs have also constituted panels for monitoring the Act at the state/UT level.