Suspecting a deeper racket operating across the country, the state PC-PNDT cell has requested the cyber crime cell of Delhi Police to pull out information about the number of fertility clinics offering sex selection services as part of their probe.
This comes after the team, in coordination with the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW) and the National Commission for Women (NCW), raided a call centre Sunday associated with the clinic Ela Prime Fertility in East Patel Nagar for allegedly offering sex selection services. The call centre allegedly promised a baby boy through IVF to couples, and offered them packages abroad.
Officials want an investigation to be carried out in all states where such fertility centres may be functioning under the nose of authorities. A letter and an email has been sent by the Director of Family Welfare to the police to act on the data collected so far.
We will then recommend the Government of India to request appropriate authorities in every state to take necessary action against them. This is a country-wide racket and all such clinics should face immediate action, said Dr Nitin Kumar, special programme officer of PC-PNDT cell, Delhi government.
As per the website mentioned in the complaint, http://www.elawoman.com, Ela is the largest and fastest growing fertility and reproductive healthcare platform, having partnered with more than 11,500 maternity and fertility hospitals, clinics and doctors across India and multiple countries around the globe.
The website further says that the network is spread across 31 countries including India, UAE, Greece, United States, New Zealand, Thailand, Poland, Colombia, etc.
The company did not respond to queries sent by The Indian Express.
Several infertility and IVF specialists listed on the company s website claimed the company worked in a partnership with the clinics. In many cases, the patients were directly sent by the company to these clinics for treatment.
I don t know the financial modalities in the set-up but the clinics are working in coordination with the website to promote themselves in the market. Many times, we are not directly involved with patients about the services they are looking for. The company sends the patients to the clinics for a specified treatment, said one of the doctors listed on the company s website.
As per the complaint received by the MoHFW, a team of 14 members was formed and it was decided that decoys would be used for the raid. The team found around 300 computer systems allegedly used to make calls to couples who wanted a child. In a statement Tuesday, the state PC-PNDT cell said the call centre was started by an IIT graduate.