Nine persons, including four doctors, have been arrested for operating a racket in which female foetuses were aborted illegally in Maharashtra's Aurangabad.district, police said Tuesday. An official said the racket was underway for several years in the MIDC, CIDCO and Osmanpura areas of the district.
One of the doctors who has been arrested, identified as Varsha Rajout, is a government medical officer, he added. "We suspect these persons performed at least 200 abortions in hospitals and clinics," Rahul Khade, Deputy Commissioner of Police, Aurangabad city, told PTI.
He said the lid on the racket was blown off following a specific tip-off on January 22, resulting in the arrest of five persons in a raid on a hospital by MIDC police. Police probe so far has revealed that accused Dr Suraj Rana is the kingpin in the racket and he was the main link between hospitals and clients desirous of an abortion, the official said.
Apart for referring such persons to hospitals for carrying out illegal abortions, Rana also at times carried sex-determination machines to these medical facilities, he said. During a raid on a hospital in Osmanpura Tuesday by a police team led by Assistant Police Inspector Shradda Vaydande, at least 10 chambers were found inside the rooms adjacent to the beds and a main chamber outside the hospital, he informed.
"We are investigating whether these chambers were for the purpose of destroying the aborted foetus after the illegal termination," API Vaydande said. The nine persons have been charged under relevant sections of the Pre-Conception and Pre-Natal Diagnostic Techniques (PCPNDT) Act and Indian Penal Code, she said.
While five of them have been sent to judicial custody, four have been remanded in police custody till February 7, the API informed..