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More female foetuses found in Orissa

Police recover over a dozen female foetuses packed in plastic containers from a drain in Bhubaneswar.
By HT Correspondent | IANS, Bhubaneswar
UPDATED ON JUL 31, 2007 11:50 PM IST

Police recovered over a dozen female foetuses packed in plastic containers from a drain near a medical diagnostic centre in Bhubaneswar on Tuesday evening.

The foetuses were found from a drain behind the Bhubaneswar Diagnostic and Ultrasound Clinic, located in a forested park area of the town near Naveen Nivas, the residence of Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik.

Local residents spotted the containers and immediately informed mediapersons as well as police. The police seized the containers and arrested laboratory technicians of the clinic.

The discovery comes days after several female foetuses were found in Nayagarh district and other parts of the state as well as a fake medicine racket amounting to millions of rupees. Tuesday's discovery is likely to bring more trouble for Patnaik and his government.

While pre-natal sex determination tests are illegal, many unauthorised clinics carry out such tests, leading to abortions in case of a female child.

Patnaik claims that police and health authorities are raiding and sealing ultrasound clinics and nursing homes that violate the law.

"We are raiding various places and nursing homes to find out if they are also involved in the crime," a senior district police official told IANS.

Last week, police had discovered at least 34 decomposed female foetuses in the district of Nayagarh.

The ghastly matter came to light when seven female foetuses, some eight-month old, and all stashed away in polythene packets, were found at the Pratapgarh cave near Duburi in Nayagarh district, some 100 km from Bhubaneswar.

Subsequently, the police discovered 132 polythene bags with medical waste and some 25 aborted foetuses and newborns from different places of the district.

The police also discovered three foetuses in a drain in Golanthara village in Ganjam district. The state government, which directed all district collectors to crack down on unauthorised nursing homes and diagnostic centres, has ordered the crime branch to probe the incidents.

The opposition Congress party has demanded an inquiry by the Central Bureau of Investigation and want the chief minister to resign for what they term his failure in checking the crime, as he holds the health department as a cabinet minister.

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