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Doctor lost licence to abort last year

The 13-year-old girl who underwent an abortion at Ruby Maternity Home in Tagore Nagar on Saturday was taken to JJ hospital for a further medical examination yesterday.


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“The girl is admitted for medical examination including sonography tests in the gynaecology and Obstetrics ward at the JJ Hospital. Initial examinations have revealed that there is no pregnancy. Her condition is being assessed,” said Dr TP Lahane, dean, JJ Hospital.

The fetus was not found as the girl’s father had discarded it in a creek.

The Vikhroli police said that the girl confessed that she was forced to have sex by her 35-year-old cousin when the family had gone to Patan taluka in May to attend a wedding. He had threatened her against informing her parents.

“A statement of the father has been taken and an arrest would be made once there is sufficient evidence. We have filed a case of rape under section 376 of the IPC against the identified relative,” an official said.

According to BMC sources, the sonography machine at Ruby Nursing Home — where the illegal abortion was carried out — was sealed in July last year as there was no proper record and documentation maintained under the Pre-conception and Pre-Natal Diagnostic Techniques (Prohibition of Sex Selection) Act, 1994. Dr Sarita Chavan’s permit to carry out abortions was also cancelled at that time. She was detained by the police and later let off.

In his earlier statement, the father had said that their daughter was suffering from some ailment that resulted in a swelling in her stomach occasionally.

The girl had not experienced menarche (the first menstrual cycle), so pregnancy did not cross their minds. They grew suspicious only when her abdomen started swelling rapidly, and took her to a nursing home in Sewri last week.

When asked, the BMC officials refused to comment on the continuous surveillance maintained by health officers at ward level to ensure that there are no illegal abortion centres. The Ruby Nursing Home comes under N-ward.

Dr Arun Bamne, executive health officer, BMC, said, “I have asked for an inquiry into the matter of the abortion centre at Vikhroli and cannot comment on the issue before the report.” 

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