An NGO has accused the Delhi government of not being serious in addressing the issue of female foeticide, which according to it, was leading to a skewed sex ratio in the national capital. Highlighting the failure to launch the Mukhbir scheme, announced in October last year, to award those helping expose people involved in sex selection, the Asian Centre for Human Rights (ACHR) said it exposes "lack of seriousness" of the Delhi government on the issue. According to the report, though 38 cases of foeticide were registered in Delhi during 2005 to 2014, there was only one conviction under the Pre-Conception and Pre-Natal Diagnostic Techniques (PC&PNDT) Act from 2009 to September 2014. On the other hand, in 2014 alone, the Health department cancelled registrations of 43 radiologists and clinics and sealed 11 ultra sonography machines for conducting sex determination of foetuses, the NGO claimed. "There is a huge gap between actual number of offences committed under the PC and PNDT Act, the number of cases registered and the rate of convictions. "Instead of launching the Mukhbir Scheme, the government issued ludicrous showcause notices to 89 hospitals and nursing homes whose sex ratio at birth (SRB) ranged from 285:1000 (female: male) to 788:1000 during 2014-2015.
Will any institution self-incriminate in their responses?" said Paritosh Chakma, director of ACHR. The NGO in its report said that the Ladli Scheme, the main programme of the Delhi government, for retention of the girl child, too has "failed" to give the desired impact. The scheme was launched without having data of intended beneficiaries to be covered under it and without fixing any annual target, financial or physical and without identifying the role of stakeholders, it pointed out. The ACHR has urged the Delhi government to revise the Delhi Ladli scheme and increase the amount for post birth benefits, besides expanding the coverage of the scheme to include all girl children of the city irrespective of income of their parents or place of birth. It also asked the government to restore the benefits of the scheme to all beneficiaries including the 52,700 cases identified by the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) during 2010-11 to 2011-12 which were dropped from the scheme due to non-renewal of their cases at different stages. The NGO also sought establishment of the PC&PNDT Bureau of Investigation under the heath department to assist the authorities for effective implementation of the Act and launch the Mukhbir Yojana to reward those providing information about sex selection tests being carried out with at least Rs 2,00,000.
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