Jammu: Prenatal testing law implementation reviewed

The DC of Jammu reviewed measures taken by the district administrations to ensure enforcement of law against prenatal testing for sex determination.

Jammu: The Divisional Commissioner of Jammu Wednesday reviewed measures taken by the district administrations of the region to ensure the enforcement of the law against prenatal testing for sex determination.

Pradeep Gupta took an overview of the implementation of Prevention of Corruption and Pre-Natal Diagnostic Techniques (PC&PNDT) Act and guidelines of the Medical Council of India (MCI) and Central Supervisory Board (CSB).

Gupta, who chaired a meeting of the Divisional Advisory Committee on PC&PNDT Act, said publicity should be given to the monetary awards by the government for whistleblowers, who inform about ultrasound clinics illegally determining the sex of a foetus, a spokesperson said.

He also reviewed district-wise status of the registered ultrasound clinics, inspections conducted by the enforcement authorities, number of unregistered clinics uncovered, cases lodged under the Act, prosecution and conviction.

Jammu province has 93 registered ultrasound clinics, while a total of 108 inspections were conducted till August, 2012, the meeting was informed.

Gupta directed to intensify checking at regular intervals and take strict action against unregistered genetic counselling centres or ultrasound clinics in private domain, including their sealing and punitive action.

The meeting also deliberated on the issue of ban on sale of second-hand ultrasound machines and portable/mobile ultrasound machines as recommended by the CSB.

All District Development Commissioners (DDCs) were instructed to ensure proper implementation of the mother-and- child tracking system by involving ASHA workers, village health and sanitation committee, panches and other locals who can tip off on illegal abortions.

Instructions were given on initiating a media campaign against the practice of female foeticide.

The need of empowering women with decision making powers and asserting their reproductive rights are of utmost importance in this regard, Gupta said at the meeting.


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