Doctors Arrested Who Fed Aborted Baby Girls to Dogs

International   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Jun 4, 2012   |   10:47AM   |   Beed, India

Two doctors who fed the bodies of aborted baby girls to dogs in order to hide cases of sex-selection abortions in India have been arrested.

Some physicians in the city of Beed, India are engaging in the practice, according to India Today, which spoke with Varsha Deshpande of Lek Ladki Abhiyan, an NGO working against the practice. Maharashtra’s Public Health Minister Suresh Shetty also admitted to the newspaper that he had heard of reports of the practice taking place.

“A person even saw a foetus being fed to the animals. This is known to everyone in Beed, but the police are not taking action as Munde is influential,” Deshpande said.

She added that some other doctors in Beed kept dogs for the same purpose – to avoid the hassle of disposing of the bodies.

Health Minister Shetty said: “I have heard of the practice but have no evidence.”

He added that since the local police seemed to be under a lot of “pressure”, he had decided to ask the crime branch to investigate the latest case.

Beed is the location of an abortion clinic that was responsible for killing a woman in a failed abortion. The husband and wife doctor team who run the medical clinic where she obtained the abortion face criminal charges.

Now, the couple has been arrested and the Times of India has more on efforts to strip them of their medical licenses.

The state government does not want Dr Sudam Munde and Dr Saraswati Munde to practise any more as doctors. The medical education department has directed the Maharashtra Medical Council to investigate the allegations against the Mundes and subsequently initiate action against the erring doctors. The doctors are accused of carrying out an abortion that led to the killing of a pregnant woman. The incident occurred on May 18 in Beed district of Maharashtra.

“According to the police records, the doctors are ‘absconding’. I have asked the MMC to gather the complaint details against these doctors from the state public health department. The council has been even asked to cancel the registration of the doctor couple if they are found guilty,” said Dr Vijaykumar Gavit, medical education minister.

Meanwhile, a women’s delegation, led by member of legislative council Vidya Chavan ( NCP), on Wednesday met home minister R R Patil on the issue. “Patil assured the delegation that the bank accounts and property of Dr Munde and his wife will be sealed,” Chavan said.

The PTI news service has more on the abortion death and the reason for the abortion — sex-selection:

Beed district has become infamous for the worst child sex ratio in Maharashtra, as per the 2011 census.

Dr Sudam Munde and Dr Sarswati Munde, the accused husband-wife, run a clinic in the Parli tehsil, police said. According to the police, the victim woman, Vijaymala Patekar, died during abortion procedure at Munde’s clinic yesterday.

As the victim’s relatives got angry, the doctors themselves informed the police about the incident.

According to the police, Patekar had four daughters, and did not want another girl child. Additional Superintendent of Police (ASP) Shrikant Dhivare told PTI that no one from the victim’s family had filed any complaint against the doctors.

Case was registered against Dr Sudam Munde and his wife for causing death by negligent act under the IPC, and also under Pre-conception and Pre-natal Diagnostic Techniques (Prevention) Act.

Last year, two people were arrested after another woman died in a botched abortion.

Women in India are frequent victims of failed legal abortions as a woman died in May 2010 from an abortion at a Marie Stopes International abortion business. According to the Republica newspaper, a woman identified as Durga Devi Khadka went to a Marie Stopes center for an abortion of her 10-week-old unborn child. She died at the MSI facility located in Damak Municipality-15 of Jhapa district.

Beed has one of the worst male-female gender ratios in India — 801 girls being born per 1,000 boys, according to the 2011 census — and the numbers are attributed to female infanticide and sex-selection abortions.

In January 2010, an Indian doctor was arrested in a newly-reported case of a botched abortion that killed a woman. The Times of India indicated the Vikhroli police recently registered a case of medical malpractice against Dr. Vinod Ganpati Prabhu.

Prabhu did an abortion on a woman who was three months pregnant in April 2006 at the Priya Maternity Home.

The newspaper indicates a panel of five doctors from JJ Hospital investigated the failed abortion and submitted their report to police on December 30, 2009, asking that Prabhu be charged.

Before that, reported on another Indian woman who died from a botched legal abortion  and was at least the third to die from a legal abortion and have her case make the Indian media that year.