How could racketeers procure ultrasound machines without DHO’s authorisation, asks former CM H.D. Kumaraswamy
Mandya: Following the female foeticide racket that shocked the State, the Karnataka Government convened an emergency meeting yesterday to discuss the situation and initiate action.
The Department of Health and Family Welfare held the meeting at Vidhana Soudha, and it was chaired by Health Minister Dinesh Gundu Rao. Officers were present with the required information to discuss the female foeticide cases reported in the state and to initiate preventive measures.
Meanwhile, a high-level delegation from the Health Department Competent Authority visited the office of the Mandya District Health Officer (DHO) yesterday and checked the office records and other files related to pregnancy, abortions and the detection of any illegal abortions. The delegation was led by Dr. Srinivas, the head of the Competent Authority.
After obtaining information from the DHO and the Taluk Health Officers, the delegation held a virtual meeting with Minister Dinesh Gundurao. Later, a training programme was held to ASHA workers on ways and means to prevent illegal abortions at village levels.
Dr. Srinivas told reporters that those arrested in the racket were not doctors (Police say that Dr.ChandanBallal and Dr.Tulasiraman are the racket kingpins). He mentioned that the Department lacked information on where the other accused in Mandya acquired training in ultrasound scanning of foetuses. According to him, the accused did not perform abortions in Mandya but only brought women for scanning.
Despite these statements, Dr. Srinivas and Mandya Health officials faced challenges in explaining how the racket thrived within jaggery-making units and how over 3,000 abortions occurred in three years without detection.
Meanwhile, former Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy has said that the unearthing of the racket shows the failure of the administrative machinery and exposes the callous attitude of the officers and how the political class has lost control over the officers.
Speaking to reporters in Mysuru yesterday, the former CM said that it is a failure of the governance mechanism. “How the racketeers were able to procure two ultrasound machines without the authorisation of the DHO? And how could the racket survive for more than three years? Along with illegal abortions, child-selling rackets are active in Karnataka. All these shows how the State is being governed,” he said.