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Survey Exposes Laxity in Monitoring of Sonography Centres

Later on June 13, the Foundation met additional director (family welfare), Pune, Dr Suresh Gupta and obtained a written order from him to Dr Pardeshi but the latter did not respond immediately.

Finally, the Foundation, with the involvement of 22 volunteers from Sadhana Centre for Management and Leadership Development and with the guidance of National Inspection and Monitoring Committee member Varsha Deshpande, completed the survey.

"We asked for the list of registered sonography centres with the PMC and found that the list was not updated. Out of the surveyed 349 sonography centers in the city, we were only able to gather information from 126 centers. The volunteers also spoke with over 200 pregnant women regarding the Act," he added.

Survey Highlights
  • At 98 per centof surveyed clinics, there were no boards (both in Marathi and English) mentioning punishment of 3 years imprisonment and fine of Rs 10,000 if found to be conducting sex determination test (As per section 17 (1) of PCPNDT Act).
  • None the surveyed clinics had boards mentioning the names and contact details of appropriate authority, if anyone wanted to inform about the violation of the PCPNDT Act.
  • At 75 per cent of the surveyed clinics, the law book both in Marathi and English (section 17) was not found.
  • 75 per cent clinics refused to show proof that the sonography reports have been sent to the appropriate authority by the 5th of every month – section 17 (2).
  • 60 per cent clinics did not show the fully filled F Form (section 4).
  • In 80 per cent cases, the technical staff, other than the doctors, fill the F Form.
  • In 83 per cent cases, it was found that doctors do not explain the F Form to the pregnant women (section 5 (1) b).
  • 69 per cent doctors did not allow the surveyors to see the sonography machine numbers and match the same with the registration number.
  • 60 per cent of the surveyed women were found to be unaware of the PCPNDT Act.

Gandhi on July 14 received a reply from Dr Pardeshi to his letter dated June 1 saying that the PMC would not permit the Foundation to conduct such a survey. Gandhi asked that if the government is providing grant to NGOs to help in detecting illegal sex determination test centres. The PCPNDT Act too has recognised the role of the NGOs, why then does the PMC not support the NGOs?

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