Female foeticide: SC dismisses contempt plea against Ramadoss

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New Delhi, Nov 4 (UNI) The Supreme Court has dismissed a contempt of court petition filed against Union Health Minister Anbumani Ramadoss for not launching an awareness programme to curb female foeticide as directed by the apex court.

A bench headed by Justice Ashok Bhan also dismissed a similar petition filed by Dr B S Dahiya against Union Health Secretary Naresh Dayal for the same reason.

According to petitioner, the Union Health Minister had not implemented its directions issued on September 10, 2003 to create awareness on female foeticide and also to implement PNDT Act with zeal and rigour.

According to the petitioner Prabhakar Deshpande a proper National Inspection and Monitoring Committee (NIMC) has not been set up by the Health Minister despite the directions of the court to check ultrasound clinics which were indulging in illegal abortion after determining the sex of the baby in womb.

Alarmed by the falling ratio between males and females in the country, the petitioner had alleged that Union Health Ministry had spent only Rs five crore for implementation of PNDT annually whereas ideally Rs 500 crore should have been spent.

According to the petitioner, Health Ministry was giving Rs five lakh each to 126 MPs for awareness programme on female foeticide without any accountability and there was possibility of misappropriation and misuse of these funds.

The petitioner also alleged that NIMC has one full-time member and inspected merely 150 out of 30,000 clinics and of which 75 clinics were found carrying out illegal abortions after determining sex through ultrasound and therefore a large number of clinics were being allowed to ''virtually murder female babies in womb'' without any fear of law and on an average, one million such deaths took place every year in the country.

UNI

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