Ministry clarifies Maneka Gandhi’s statement on female foeticide

New Delhi: Seeking to clarify union Minister Maneka Gandhi’s statement on female foeticide, the Women and Child Development ministry on Tuesday said some news reports about her remarks were “factually incorrect”.

“Some newspapers have reported that the minister referred to a cabinet proposal about tracking female foeticide and registering the sex of the foetus. This is factually incorrect,” a ministry statement said.

“Maneka Sanjay Gandhi said there is an alternate point of view that if each pregnancy could be registered and the sex of the foetus made known to parents and if it happens to be a female, the delivery should be tracked and recorded. Such a system will help ensure that a foetus is not aborted only because it is a female,” the statement added.

The ministry clarified that the minister’s statement was about a point of view that has often been brought up by stakeholders before the ministry.

“She specifically said that this issue needs further debate and requested the media to give their suggestions. It is further clarified that there is no formal proposal being considered by the ministry on the issue at this stage.” the statement added.

Inaugurating the All India Regional Editors’ Conference in Jaipur on February 1, the minister said that in her view, a pregnant woman should be compulsorily told whether the foetus is a male or female. The fact should then be registered to enable tracking of deliveries.