Make sex determination test compulsory: Maharashtra House committee
A Maharashtra assembly committee has recommended making pre-natal sex determination mandatory to prevent female foeticide.
The suggestion was made by the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) in a report tabled in the assembly on Friday.
The panel -- headed by Congress MLA Gopaldas Agrawal -- called for bringing parents under the purview of the Pre- Conception and Pre-Natal Diagnostic Techniques (Regulation and Prevention of Misuse) Act, (PCPNDT) 1994.
The committee also called for monitoring of pregnant women by local health officials to ascertain if they have aborted the foetus in case it was female.
According to the report, the sex determination test must be done when parents come for sonography and they should be tracked regularly to check if they are coming for tests even after knowing that the foetus is that of a girl child.
“When parents come for sonography, compulsory sex determination must be allowed and follow-ups must be done at the local level to ensure the couples come for further check- ups. It is necessary to visit these couples at home if they stop check-ups,” it said.
“Since the law only provides for action against doctors (for carrying out sex selection tests), there is no fear of the law among parents. But this fear of law among parents is necessary to increase the sex ratio. Doctors, parents, district health officers (DHOs) and NGOs must be involved in the tracking system,” the committee suggested.
Appreciating the government’s efforts to strengthen the PCPNDT Act, the committee said a mechanism has been put in place to check sonography centres every three months.
As many as 550 cases registered under the PCPNDT Act are pending in courts in the state, the panel said.
In 2010, the sex ratio in Maharashtra was 854 girls per 1,000 boys and it went up to 861 in 2011 and 919 in 2014, it noted.
A suspected gender-selective abortion racket came to light last month in Sangli, western Maharashtra, where 19 aborted female foetuses were found dumped near a hospital.
Panic gripped the residents of Janetpur, Dera Bassi, after a woman and some children spotted a leopard in the fields around 11 am on Thursday. Villagers informed the police, who alerted the wildlife department. Swinging into action, the department set up a cage to trap the wild cat and made announcements asking people to stay indoors. A wildlife department team, along with police personnel, has also been deployed in the area.
With an aim to help patients with chronic Inflammatory bowel disease manage the disease effectively, Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research launched IBD cards on Thursday, globally celebrated as World IBD Day. IBD, an ongoing illness caused by the inflammation of the intestines, has two main types: ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease. The IBD card has been designed by PGIMER's gastroenterology department, in association with Colitis and Crohn's Foundation, India.
The Punjab Pollution Control Board has imposed a fine of ₹5 lakh on a Dera Bassi-based pharmaceutical company for multiple violations of the Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act. Located in Saidpura village, the firm, Nectar Life Sciences, manufactures antibiotic drugs. During an inspection of the firm's plant in the village on March 29, a PPCB team found untreated effluents being discharged into the fly ash area for stagnation.
Angered over the snatching of Raju's rickshaw, a rag-picker battered a 24-year-old youth to death and injured another man while they were asleep in the Sector-38 market in the wee hours of Thursday. Around 11 pm on Wednesday, while he was returning home, Manoj and Kishori, also rag-pickers, intercepted him near the e-Sampark Centre in Sector 38-D. An altercation ensued and the accused forcibly snatched his rickshaw.
After the recent spell of severe heat, some relief is around the corner, as the India Meteorological Department has forecast chances of light rain in the city every day till May 24. The city's maximum temperature continued to rise, going up from 40.3C on Wednesday to 41C on Thursday, 3.4 degrees above normal. The minimum temperature also went up from 23.2C on Wednesday to 26.4C on Thursday, 3.7 degrees above normal.