Pre-Conception and Pre-Natal Diagnostic Techniques (PCPNDT)
Introduction:-Pre-Conception and Pre-Natal Diagnostic Techniques (PCPNDT) Act, 1994 is an Act of the Parliament of India enacted to stop female foeticides and arrest the declining sex ratio in India. The act banned prenatal sex determination.
The main purpose of enacting the act is to ban the use of sex selection techniques before or after conception and prevent the misuse of prenatal diagnostic technique for sex selective abortion.
Offences under this act include conducting or helping in the conduct of prenatal diagnostic technique in the unregistered units, sex selection on a man or woman, conducting PNDT test for any purpose other than the one mentioned in the act, sale, distribution, supply, renting etc. of any ultra sound machine or any other equipment capable of detecting sex of the foetus.
Main provisions in the act are:-
1. The Act provides for the prohibition of sex selection, before or after conception.
2. It regulates the use of pre-natal diagnostic techniques, like ultrasound machine by allowing them their use only to detect :- genetic abnormalities, metabolic disorders, chromosomal abnormalities, certain congenital malformations, haemoglobinopathies, Sex linked disorders.
3. No laboratory or centre or clinic will conduct any test including ultrasonography for the purpose of determining the sex of the foetus.
4. No person, including the one who is conducting the procedure as per the law, will communicate the sex of the foetus to the pregnant woman or her relatives by words, signs or any other method.
5. Any person who puts an advertisement for pre-natal and pre-conception sex determination facilities in the form of a notice, circular, label, wrapper or any document, or advertises through interior or other media in electronic or print form or engages in any visible representation made by means of hoarding, wall painting, signal, light, sound, can be imprisoned for up to three years and fined Rs. 10,000.