116 convictions for violating sex determination law: Azad

Last Updated: Tuesday, July 23, 2013 - 23:47

New Delhi: About 288 cases of violation of sex determination test were reported last year and 116 resulted in convictions, union Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad said Tuesday.

Speaking at the 21st meeting of the Central Supervisory Board (CSB) on Pre-Conception and Pre-Natal Diagnostic Techniques (PC & PNDT) Act, Azad said his ministry has increased its engagement with the states to identify and address challenges in the implementation of law.

"Out of 288 cases filed last year, 116 convictions have been secured under the Act and licenses of 53 doctors have been suspended by state medical councils," he said.

Azad said new challenges keep emerging with each passing day.

"Blood tests that disclose the sex of a foetus are available on the internet or abroad including ultrasound procedures on mobile phones," he said.

"For this reason, all stakeholders should act in partnership with government to counter the unethical practice of gender biased sex selection through misuse of rapidly evolving technologies," he said.

Quoting the Annual Health Survey 2011, Azadsaid sex ratio at birth in urban areas is lower than the rural areas except Rajasthan.

"But there is still preference of son and discrimination against the girl child in our country. Against the backdrop of son preference, the mushrooming of ultrasound diagnostic facilities has compounded implementation of the law," he said.

"To deal with the challenging socio-cultural attitudes, a comprehensive and innovative and information, education and communication (IEC) strategy has been put in place to promote positive attitudes for ensuring survival and protection of girl child," he added.

IANS



First Published: Tuesday, July 23, 2013 - 23:47

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