'Sex determination tests are rampant'

Organised by the Department of Health and Family Welfare, the conference saw participation of about 900 gynaecologists, radiologists and members of civil societies. 

Prof Sarasu Thomas of the National Law School of India University (NLSIU) said during a study conducted by her, it was found that Karnataka had filed the highest number of cases against sex determination, as per its affidavit filed before the Supreme Court in 2004-05.

Even the location of case files is not known in several districts. For instance, 13 cases were filed in Bangalore Urban, Bangalore Rural and Mandya districts. However, when she asked the authorities to show her the files, they were unable to locate them. “The actual conviction rate is quite low and legal advisors have low awareness about the Act. Lack of independent witnesses and substantial evidence has allowed wrong-doers to go scot-free," she said.

Former IPS officer Kiran Bedi asked the doctors to take an oath not to indulge in such unethical practices.

Justice B V Nagaratna launched the website, www.pcpndtbangalore.in, that gives details on the Act and provides monthly report of the district advisory scanning committee.

Congress leader Rani Satish released ‘Kinnari,’ a book that gave insight into the Act. Drawing attention to the inspections conducted by the committee, Deputy Commissioner M K Aiyappa, said of the 1,200 ultrasound scanning centres in the City, 250 centres had been inspected in the last one year.

Criminal cases were booked against two centres, in four centres equipment were seized and the licence of one scanning centre was revoked. Besides, of the 2,500 ultrasound scanning centres in the State, 50 per cent  are located in Bangalore alone, and there were many mobile scanning centres too, he added.

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