Union Health Minister Anbumani Ramadoss has said that the government is very concerned about the falling sex ratio in the country and plans to take several steps to check female foeticide, which is the main cause for the same.
Dr Ramadoss said that there were plans to set up surveillance cells and conduct countrywide sting operations to check this unfortunate practice that prevails on a large scale in the country. These measures are a part of the "save the girl child" yatra, which Dr Ramadoss launched from New Delhi. He said that several amendments to the Pre-Natal Diagnostic Techniques (PNDT) Act make it possible to punish those who aid and abet the practice of female foeticide including doctors and parents alike. The surveillance cells will have senior retired police, legal and medical consultants so that all the areas of the situation are adequately covered. Sting operation to nab the culprits will not harass pregnant women, he stressed.
The falling sex ratio is a genuine cause for concern in India, where even today the birth of a girl child inspires commiserations rather than accolades. The state of Punjab 'boasts'of the lowest sex ratio with 793 females per 1000 males. Similar figures abound in Rajastan, Delhi, Haryana and Bihar. This particular yatra to save the girl child was organized by the World Council of Arya Samaj and is a fortnight long event that began on November 1 from Tankara, Gujarat, the birth place of Maharishi Dayanand.
Ramadoss appreciated the measures being taken by the Council and said that everyone using ultra-sound equipment was required to register with their local Appropriate Authority.