By Aiman Khan
New Delhi [India], Oct 1 (ANI): A team comprising of the National Commission for Women (NCW) along with Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare and other organisations, on Tuesday conducted a raid at an IVF clinic here that offered gender identification services and promised male babies to couples by taking them abroad.
According to Rekha Sharma, the National Commission for Women (NCW) chief, a team comprising of officers from the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Ministry of Law and Justice, Delhi Pre-Natal Diagnostic Techniques (PNDT), District authorities, police officials and NCW busted a sex-selection racket by conducting operations across the country. The NCW representatives played a crucial role in conducting this raid.
"The Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare received a complaint about a racket operating in Delhi and with branches across the country, by the name 'Ela Woman'. The clinic used to operate through a full-fledged call centre and had a website wherein people could contact them. NCW condemns this act and expresses its concern over gender imbalance in the society today," said Sharma.
"In fact, they had also guaranteed the assurance of giving a male child by the help of In-vitro fertilisation or the IVF process, on their website. It regulates the use of pre-natal diagnostic techniques, like ultrasound and amniocentesis by allowing them their use only to detect genetic abnormalities and sex-linked disorders," she added.
According to officials, the clinic operated through a call centre where around 300 people used to call people across India and offer them to try IVF treatment. They also promised to take them to other countries like Thailand, Singapore and Dubai on the pretext of promising them a male child.
"The investigators seized 200-300 laptops from their call centre and also found out that the complete business was conceived as a start-up by an IIT graduate and was operational for past two years without any signboard," she added.
The investigation team divided themselves into two parties and raided two clinics that were being run by the IVF clinic. Members of one party went as decoy customers and took an appointment at the Kirti Nagar branch of the clinic. After getting a confirmation call from the call centre they entered the clinic wherein a relationship officer of Ela woman explained the complete procedure and also highlighted the fact that since sex selection is a punishable offence in India they send the patients to Dubai, Bangkok and Singapore under various packages.
They mentioned that their clinic has a wide network across the country with 100 such clinics and coordinators in Dubai, Singapore and Bangkok.
"Our decoy team was given a quote of Rs. 8.5 lakhs for getting a baby boy through IVF in Dubai. The details were captured by the relationship manager on a piece of paper. Meanwhile, the other team walked in the centre and seized all the evidence," said Sharma.
The registration of the IVF Centre has been cancelled and evidence is being studied for further action by the cybercrime cell and other authorities. (ANI)
Delhi: Clinic busted for promising male babies through IVF abroad
Aiman Khan | Updated: Oct 01, 2019 23:18 IST
By Aiman Khan