The image of Maharashtra as a progressive state has taken a beating following the recent spate of female foeticides, particularly in Beed district, prompting the Congress-NCP government to swing into action.
Beed district has the lowest male-female sex ratio among children under the age of 6 in Maharashtra at 801 female against 1000 male children, according to the 2011 census.
The state government is consulting Maharashtra Medical Council, Indian Medical Association and radiologists to find a way to curb the foeticides and may consider shutting down stand-alone sonography centres.
Maharashtra health minister Suresh Shetty said a dedicated official stationed at Pune will co-ordinate with legal and health departments regarding violations of PCPNDT and MTP acts.
Joint action by police and health departments will be taken against unauthorised MTP centres, he said. In the last few days, 115 sonography centres have been raided and 22 sealed, while 403 unauthorised MTP centres have been raided and six have been closed down.
Authorities have sealed the Munde hospital at Parli, after a doctor couple running the facility, was charged with the death of a 28-year-old pregnant woman last month.
The woman, Vijaymala Patekar, mother of four girls, haemorrhaged to death at Munde hospital. She was into her second trimester.
Dr Sudam Munde and wife Saraswati, now in the hiding, thrived on illegal abortions for more than two decades. Women came there in large numbers, even those from neighbouring states Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka.