Police in Telangana’s Warangal district have detained 18 people for their involvement in pre-natal sex determination tests and illegal abortions, including four physicians and the owner of a private hospital. The gang carried out illegal abortions on female foetuses at various sites throughout the district in collaboration with select hospitals. Warangal police, the Anti-Human Trafficking Unit (AHTU), and the health department collaborated on the operation.
The police recovered sex determination scanning devices ₹73,000 in cash, and 18 telephones from the accused during the operation. Individuals arrested, including doctors and medical personnel, have been charged under the Pre-Conception and Pre-Natal Diagnostic Techniques Act (PCPNDT) of 1994 and other relevant statutes. According to Warangal Police Commissioner A.V. Ranganath, two suspects are still at large.
Vemula Praveen, the main accused, and his wife Sandhyarani conducted a clandestine scanning centre in Narsampet. Praveen had previously been apprehended by Hanamkonda police for similar offences while working as a technician at a scanning centre. Regardless, he continued to participate in criminal activity.
Following complaints from multiple people, the police initiated the operation and executed a sting operation to catch the accused in the act. According to the investigation, Praveen had developed contacts with private liaison officers, public relations officers, hospital administration, as well as registered medical practitioners (RMPs) and private medical practitioners (PMPs) in numerous places.
Illegal abortions were being performed at four private hospitals in the district, and it was discovered that Ayurvedic practitioners were also involved in abortions. The accused had expanded their network into remote areas and employed portable devices to conduct sex determination tests.
According to the Commissioner, the gang charged between 30,000 and 50,000 for each abortion, and it is estimated that they performed roughly 200 such procedures. The arrests are a key step towards reducing the region’s illegal practise of pre-natal sex determination and illegal abortions.
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