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PRE-CONCEPTION AND PRE-NATAL DIAGNOSTIC TECHNIQUES (PROHIBITION OF SEX SELECTION) ACT

Ministry of Law and Justice

Act nº 57 of 1994


  • Chapter I
  • Chapter II
  • Chapter III
  • Chapter IV
  • Chapter V
  • Chapter VI
  • Chapter VII
  • Chapter VIII
  • Amending Acts
  • Act nº 57 of 1994

Preamble

THE PRE-CONCEPTION AND PRE-NATAL DIAGNOSTIC TECHNIQUES (PROHI BITION OF SEX SELECTION) ACT, 1994

[Act, No. 57 of 1994]

[ 20 th September, 1994 ]

PREAMBLE

1[An Act to provide for the prohibition of sex selection, before or after conception, and for regulation of pre-natal diagnostic techniques for the purposes of detecting genetic abnormalities or me tabolic disorders or chromosomal abnormalities or certain congenital malformations or sex-linked disorders and for the prevention of their misuse for sex determination leading to female foeticide and for matters connected therewith or incidental thereto.]

B e it enacted by Parliament in the Forty-fifth Year of the Republic of India as follows:--

1 . Substituted b y Act 14 of 2003, sec. 2, for the long title (see Annexe).


Chapter I

Section 1. Short title, extent and commencement

( 1) This Act may be called1[the Preconception and Pre-natal Diagnostic Techniques (Prohibition of Sex Selection)] Act, 1994.

( 2) It shall extend to the whole of India except the State of Jammu and Kashmir.

( 3) It shall come into force on such date2as the Central Government may, by notification in the Official Gazette, appoint.

1 . Substituted b y Act 14 of 2003, sec. 3, for "the Pre-natal Diagnostic Techniques (Regulation and Prevention of Misuse)".

2 . Came into force on 1 - 1 - 1996, vide G.S.R. 706, dated 20 th December, 1995, published in the Gazette of India, Extra., Pt. II, Sec. 3 (ii), dated 21 st December, 1995 .


Section 2. Definitions

In this Act, unless the context otherwiserequires,--

(a)"Appropriate Authority" means the Appropriate Authorityappointed under section 17;

(b)"Board" means the Central Supervisory Boardconstituted under section 7;

1 [(ba) "conceptus" means anyproduct of conception at any stage of development from fertilisation untilbirth including extra embryonic membranes as well as the embryoor foetus;

(bb)"embryo" means a developing human organism after fertilisationtill the end of eight weeks (fifty-six days);

(be)"foetus" means a human organism during the period of itsdevelopment beginning on the fifty-seventh day following fertilisation orcreation (excluding any time in which its development has been suspended) andending at the birth;]

(c)"Genetic Counselling Centre" means an institute, hospital,nursing home or any place, by whatever name called, which provides for geneticcounselling to patients;

(d)"Genetic Clinic" means a clinic, institute,hospital, nursing home or any place, by whatever name called, which is used forconducting prenatal diagnostic procedures;

1 [Explanation.--For the purposes of this clause, "GeneticClinic' includes a vehicle, where ultrasound machine or imaging machine orscanner or other equipment capable of determining sex of the foetusor a portable equipment which has the potential for detection of sex duringpregnancy or selection of sex before conception, is used;]

(e)"Genetic Laboratory" means a laboratory and includesa pleace where facilities are provided for conducting analysis or tests ofsamples received from Genetic Clinic for pre-natal diagnostic test;

1 [Explanation.--For the purposes of this clause, "GeneticLaboratory' includes a place where ultrasound machine or imaging machine orscanner or other equipment capable of determining sex of the foetusor a portable equipment which has the potential for detection of sex duringpregnancy or selection of sex before conception, is used;]

(f)"gynaecologist" means a person who possesses apost-graduate qualification in gynaecology and obstetrics;

2 [(g) "medicalgeneticist" includes a person who possesses a degree or diploma in geneticscience in the fields of sex selection and pre-natal diagnostic techniques orhas experience of not less than two years in any of these fields afterobtaining--

(i)any one of the medical qualifications recognised under the IndianMedical Council Act, 1956 (102 of 1956); or

(ii)a post-graduate degree in biological sciences;]

(h) "paediatrician" means aperson who possesses a post-graduate qualification in paediatrics;

3 [(i) "pre-natal diagnosticprocedures" means all gynaecological or obstetrical or medicalprocedures such as ultrasonography, foetoscopy, taking or removing samples ofamniotic fluid, chorionic villi, embryo, blood or any othertissue or fluid of a man, or of a woman before or after conception, for beingsent to a Genetic Laboratory or Genetic Clinic for conducting any type ofanalysis or pre-natal diagnostic tests for selection of sex before or afterconception;]

(j)"pre-natal diagnostic techniques" includes all pre-natal diagnosticprocedures and pre-natal diagnostic tests;

4 (k)"pre-natal diagnostic test" meansultrasonography or any test or analysis of amniotic fluid, chorionic villi,blood or any tissue or fluid of a pregnant woman or conceptus conducted todetect genetic or metabolic disorders orchromosomal abnormalities or congenital anomalies or haemoglobinopathies orsex-linked diseases;]

(l) "prescribed" means prescribed by rules made under this Act;

(m) "registered medicalpractitioner" means a medical practitioner who possesses any recognised medical qualification as defined in clause (h) of section 2 ofthe Indian Medical Council Act, 1956 (102 of 1956),and whose name has been entered in a State Medical Register;

(n) "regulations" means regulations framed by the Board under this Act;

1 [(o)"sex selection" includes any procedure, technique, test oradministration or prescription or provision of anything for the purpose ofensuring or increasing the probability that an embryo will be of a particularsex;

(p) "sonologist or imaging specialist" means a person who possesses any one of the medical qualifications recognised under the Indian MedicalCouncil Act, 1956 (102 of 1956)or who possesses a post-graduate qualification in ultrasonography or imagingtechniques or radiology;

(q) "State Board" means a State Supervisory Boardor a Union territory Supervisory Boardconstituted under section 16A;

(r) "State Government" in relation toUnion territory with Legislature meansthe Administrator of that Union territory appointed by the President underarticle 239 of Constitution.]

1.Inserted by Act 14 of 2003, sec. 4.

2.Substituted by Act 14 of 2003,sec. 4, for clause (g) (seeAnnexe).

3.Substituted by Act 14 of 2003,sec. 4, for clause (i) (seeAnnexe).

4.Substituted by Act 14 of 2003,sec. 4, for clause (k) (seeAnnexe).


Chapter II

Section 3. Regulation of Genetic Counselling Centres, Genetic Laboratories and Genetic Clinics

On and from the commencement of this Act,--

(1) no Genetic Counselling Centre, Genetic Laboratory or Genetic Clinic unless registered under this Act, shall conduct or associate with, or help in, conducting activities relating to pre-natal diagnostic techniques;

3[(2) no Genetic Counselling Centre or Genetic Laboratory or Genetic Clinic shall employ or cause to be employed or take services of any person, whether on honorary basis or on payment who does not possess the qualifications as may be prescribed;]

(3) no medical geneticist, gynaecologist paediatrician registered medical practitioner or any other person shall conduct or cause to be conducted or aid in conducting by himself or through any other person, any prenatal diagnostic techniques at a place other than a place registered under this Act.

1. Substituted by Act 14 of 2003, sec. 5, for clause (2) (see Annexe).


Section 3A. Prohibition of sex-selection

1[3A. Prohibition of sex-selection

No person, including a specialist or a team of specialists in the field of infertility, shall conduct or cause to be conducted or aid in conducting by himself or by any other person, sex selection on a woman or a man or on both or on any tissue, embryo, conceptus, fluid or gametes derived from either or both of them.

1 . Inserted b y Act 14 of 2003, sec. 6 .


Section 3B. Prohibition on sale of ultrasound machine, etc., to persons, laboratories, clinics, etc., not registered under the Act

No person shall sell any ultrasound machine or imaging machine or scanner or any other equipment capable of detecting sex of foetus to any Genetic Counselling Centre, Genetic Laboratory, Genetic Clinic or any other person not registered under the Act.]

Chapter III

Section 4. Regulation of pre-natal diagnostic techniques

On and from the commencement of this Act,--

(1) no placeincluding a registered Genetic Counselling Centre or Genetic Laboratory orGenetic Clinic shall be used or caused to be used by any person forconducting pre-natal diagnostic techniques except for the purposes specified inclause (2) and after satisfying any of the conditionsspecified in clause (3);

(2) nopre-natal diagnostic techniques shall be conducted except forthe purposes of detection of any of the following abnormalities, namely:--

(i)chromosomal abnormalities;

(ii)genetic metabolic diseases;

(iii)haemoglobinopathies;

(iv)sex-linked genetic diseases;

(v)congenital anomalies;

(vi)any other abnormalities or diseases as may be specified bythe Central Supervisory Board;

1 [(3) nopre-natal diagnostic techniques shall be used or conductedunless the person qualified to do so is satisfied for reasons to be recorded inwriting that any of the following conditions are fulfilled, namely:--

(i)age of the pregnant woman is above thirty-five years;

(ii)the pregnant woman has undergone two or more spontaneous abortions or foetalloss;

(iii)the pregnant woman had been exposed to potentially teratogenic agents such as drugs,radiation, infection or chemicals;

(iv)the pregnant woman or her spouse has a family history of mentalretardation or physical deformities such as, spasticity or any othergenetic disease;

(v)any other condition as may be specified by theBoard:

Providedthat the person conducting ultrasonography on a pregnant woman shal keepcomplete record thereof in the clinic in such manner, as may be prescribed, andany deficiency or inaccuracy found therein shall amount to contraventionof the provisions of section 5 or section 6 unlesscontrary is proved by the person conducting such ultrasonography;

(4) noperson including a relative or husband of the pregnant woman shall seekor encourage the conduct of any pre-natal diagnostic techniques on her exceptfor the purposes specified in clause (2);

(5) noperson including a relative or husband of a woman shall seek or encourage theconduct of any sex-selection technique on her or him or both.]

1.Substituted by Act 14 of 2003,sec. 7, for clauses (3) and (4) (see Annexe).


Section 5. Written consent of pregnant woman and prohibition of communicating the sex of foetus

( 1) No person referred to in clause ( 2) of section 3 shall conduct the pre-natal diagnostic procedures unless--

(a) he has explained all known side and after effects of such procedures to the pregnant woman concerned;

(b) he has obtained in the prescribed form her written consent to undergo such procedures in the language which she understands; and

(c) a copy of her written consent obtained under clause (b) is given to the pregnant woman.

1[( 2) No person including the person conducting pre-natal diagnostic procedures shall communicate to the pregnant woman concerned or her relatives or any other person the sex of the foetus by words, signs, or in any other manner.]

1 . Substituted b y Act 14 of 2003, Sec. 8, for sub -section ( 2 ) (see Annexe).


Section 6. Determination of sex prohibited

On and from the commencement of this Act,--

(a) no Genetic Counselling Centre or Genetic Laboratory or Genetic Clinic sh all conduct or cause to be conducted in its Centre, Laboratory or Clinic, pre-natal diagnostic techniques including ultrasonography, for the purpose of determining the sex of a foetus;

(b) no person sh all conduct or cause to be conducted any pre-natal diagnostic techniques including ultrasonography for the purpose of determining the sex of a foetus.

1[(c) no person sh all, by whatever me ans, cause or allow to be caused selection of sex before or after conception.]

1 . Inserted b y Act 14 of 2003, sec. 9 .


Chapter IV

Section 7. Constitution of Central Supervisory Board

(1) The Central Government shall constitute a Board to be known as the Central Supervisory Board to exercise the powers and perform the functions conferred on the Board under this Act.

(2) The Board shall consist of--

(a) the Minister in charge of the Ministry or Department of Family Welfare, who shall be the Chairman, ex officio;

(b) the Secretary to the Government of India in charge of the Department of Family Welfare, who shall be the Vice-Chairman, ex officio;

1 [(c) three members to be appointed by the Central Government to represent the Ministries of Central Government in charge of Women and Child Development, Department of Legal Affairs or Legislative Department in the Minstry of Law and Justice, and Indian System of Medicine and Homoeopathy, ex officio;]

(d) the Director General of Health Services of the Central Government, ex-officio;

(e) ten members to be appointed by the Central Government, two each from amongst--

(i) eminent medical geneticists;

2 [(ii) eminent gynaecologist and obstetrician or expert of stri-roga or prasuti-tantrar]

(iii) eminent paediatricians;

(iv) eminent social scientists; and

(v) representatives of women welfare organisations;

(f) three women Members of Parliament, of whom two shall be elected by the House of the People and one by the Council of States;

(g) four members to be appointed by the Central Government by rotation to represent the States and the Union territories, two in the alphabetical order and two in the reverse alphabetical order:

Provided that no appointment under this clause shall be made ex­cept on the recommendation of the State Government or, as the case may be, the Union territory;

(h) an officer, not below the rank of a Joint Secretary or equivalent of the Central Government, in charge of Family Welfare, who shall be the Member-Secretary, ex officio.

1. Substituted by Act 14 of 2003, sec. 10, for clause (c) (see Annexe).

2. Substituted by Act 14 of 2003, sec. 10, for sub-clause (ii) (see Annexe).


Section 8. Term of office of members

( 1) The term of office of a member, other than an ex officio member, shall be,--

(a) in case of appointment under clause (e) or clause (f) of sub-section ( 2) of section 7, three years;1[* * *]

2[Provided that the term of office of a member elected under clause (f) of sub-section ( 2) of section 7 shall come to an end as soon as the member becomes a Minister or Minister of State or Deputy Minister, or the Speaker or the Deputy Speaker of the House of the People, or the Deputy Chairman of the Council of States or ceases to be a member of the House from which he was elected; and]

(b) in case of appointment under clause (g) of the said sub-section, one year.

( 2) If a casual vacancy occurs in the office of any other members, whether by reason of his death, resignation or inability to discharge his functions owing to illness or other incapacity, such vacancy shall be filled by the Central Government by making a fresh appointment and the member so appointed shall hold office for the remainder of the term of office of the person in whose place he is so appointed.

( 3) The Vice-Chairman shall perform such functions as may be assigned to him by the Chairman from time to time.

( 4) The procedure to be followed by the members in the discharge of their functions shall be such as may be prescribed.

1 . The word "and" omitted by Act 32 of 2001, sec. 2 (w .e.f . 3 - 9 - 2001 ).

2 . Inserted b y Act 32 of 2001, sec. 2 (w .e.f . 3 - 9 - 2001 ).