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Petition on gender tests

New Delhi, Sept. 5: The Supreme Court has reserved its judgment on a petition contending that illegal sex determination tests resulted in female foeticide.

The Centre for Education on Health and Allied Themes and Dr Sabu George had moved court, urging implementation of the amendment to the Pre-Natal Diagnostic Techniques (Regulation and Prevention of Misuse) Act prohibiting “sex selection”.

The contending parties and the government counsel agreed that, if the court upholds the petition, it would be difficult for couples to know the sex of the offsprings in the womb itself. It would also not be possible for unregistered clinics, laboratories and doctors to buy ultrasound machines.

Section 3A of the act says: “No person, including a specialist or a team of specialists in the field of infertility, shall conduct or cause to be conducted or aid in conducting by himself or by any other person, sex selection on a woman or a man or on both or on any tissue, embryo, conceptus, fluid or gametes derived from either or both of them.”

Section 3B bars the sale of any ultrasound machine to any genetic counselling centre, genetic laboratory or any other person not registered in the act.

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