While rejecting anticipatory bail plea of a person for an offense under Pre Conception and Pre Natal Diagnostics Techniques Act, 1994 the Punjab and Haryana High Court stated in the case, Hassan Mohd. Vs. State of Haryana that“in a civilized society the sex of foetus cannot be a determining factor for having a lease of life to see this world, if permitted the consequences would be devastating, the civilization itself would be endangered.”
The information regarding illegal activities under the Pre-Conception and Pre-Natal Diagnostic Technique (Prohibition of Sex Selection) Act, 1994 was received by the Police, where a dummy customer was set to get an ultrasound done, and payment was made by marked currency notes. Petitioner dramatized the conducting of ultrasound and played a pre-recorded video on LCD. In the raid, the LCD and other equipment and currency notes were seized.
The petitioners pleaded for anticipatory bail and contended that, there was no complaint made by anyone against him and that no ultrasound machine was recovered from the premises and therefore the provisions of the act won’t apply.
As there was the recovery of marked notes and ultrasound machine, the State was against the anticipatory bail.
The Court observed that, “the determination of the sex of the foetus is a malaice which is affecting society day in and day out and the same needs to be curbed. Despite dedicated legislation, the menace has not left society.” And the contentions of petitioners were rejected by the court stating that the same holds no water.
The observations in Voluntary Health Association of Punjab v. Union of India were taken into account which stated that “The society that treats man and woman with equal dignity shows the reflections of a progressive and civilized society. To think that a woman should think what a man or a society wants her to think is tantamount to slaughtering her choice, and definitely a humiliating act. When freedom of free choice is allowed within constitutional and statutory parameters, others cannot determine the norms as that would amount to acting in derogation of law.”
The court stated in the present case that “even though the ultrasound was not conducted, but the gel was applied and there were attempts to determine the sex of the unborn.” The court thus rejected the petitioner’s plea of anticipatory bail.
Hassan Mohd. Vs. State of Haryana [CRM-M-34797 of 2020]
Counsel for petitioner: Adv. Sarfraj Hussain
Counsel for respondent: Adv. Pankaj Mulwani
Coram- Justice Avneesh Jhingan