Retd cops on vigilance squads to check sex determination
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For the first time ever, retired police officers have been appointed for regional and state vigilance squads to check the menace of illegal sex selection. A total of 12 posts have been created and the state family welfare bureau in Pune has recruited nine retired police officers and civil surgeons to address complaints regarding sex selective tests and ensure strict implementation of Pre-Conception and Pre Natal Diagnostic Techniques (PC-PNDT) Act.
Dr Asaram Khade, in charge of the state nodal PC-PNDT cell, told Newsline that regional squads have been set up at Nagpur, Nashik and Aurangabad and two retired police officers have been appointed for the state-level squad at Pune.
The State Health Society, Maharashtra, under the National Rural Urban Health Mission, had invited applications from eligible candidates. The vigilance officers will be paid Rs 50,000 per month each at the state level and over Rs 35,000 at the regional level. The vigilance officers who have been hired had retired as Superintendent of Police or Deputy Commissioner of Police.
As per the 2011 census, the child sex ratio in Maharashtra declined by 30 points over the last decade. The state has now renewed its campaign to strictly implement the PC-PNDT Act. In June, the state health authorities carried out a month-long inspection drive in which they found violations at 291 sonography centres and de-recognised 341 medical termination of pregnancy (MTP) centres in the state.
"Our inspection drive will continue and for the first time even manufacturers of sonography machines will have to get themselves registered with the state appropriate authority," Khade said. "We have received 12-13 applications from manufacturers to get their machines registered," he added.
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