"Those who were charging Rs 200 to Rs 500 are now charging as much as Rs 2,000 for the scan alone. It is done very secretively. The result of the test is not put on paper, nor is it told over the phone, for fear of prosecution," says a doctor who did not want to be named.
"They have also started using sign language to convey the sex to the patient. They are very careful nowadays, as NGOs and journalists are conducting sting operations to catch doctors practising sex determination tests," he adds.'''
It is no coincidence that Belgaum, which has the lowest child sex ratio in the state, ranks second only to Bangalore in terms of the number of centres with ultrasound machines.
The district has a whopping 142 registered ultrasound machines. The tiny taluk of Gokak has 20 machines and Chikkodi 17. The ultrasound business in Belgaum had a humble beginning...
Ultra-sonography, which is a great boon to a pregnant woman as it can detect congenital deformities in foetuses, is misused to detect the sex of the foetus and systematically get rid of the female child.
I wonder what the sign language is. A raised finger when a penis has been detected?
What do you think of the use of sonography to assist a woman who intends to abort a female? Is it worse in a region where women who have female children are treated badly and where the female children themselves are treated badly or worse in the United States?
How often is abortion for sex selection done in our country? Does your response to it here depend on whether females are consistently targeted? If sex selection abortions are aimed at both male and female fetuses, is it more acceptable?
Do you have a different opinion of an American woman who has an abortion because she wants her second child to be the opposite sex from her first child and an American woman who believes males are superior or thinks a female child will prove more loving and tractable?