Tribune News Service
New Delhi, June 15
The Supreme Court, on Monday, issued notice to the Centre on a petition against a notification suspending certain provisions of the Pre-Conception and Pre-Natal Diagnostic Techniques (Prohibition of Sex-Selection) Rules in wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.
A Bench headed by Justice UU Lalit, however, refused to stay the April 4 notification of the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, which is to remain in force till the end of June.
“The situation in the country is quite difficult; it is a national crisis. A lot of medical professionals, doctors are required for all this work. We are in a national emergency and the relaxation is only till June 30,” the Bench told senior advocate Sanjay Parikh, who represented the petitioner.
The Supreme Court gave liberty to petitioner Sabu Mathew George, come to it if the notification was extended, and posted it for hearing in the third week of July.
George had challenged the notification, which suspended the implementation of Rule 8, Rule 9(8) and 18A (6) of the PCPNDT Rules, 1996 till June 30 this year.
Terming it “illegal and arbitrary”, he said the notification was without jurisdiction as the PCPNDT Act didn’t confer any powers on the government for the suspension of the Rules made under the Act.
As Parikh pressed for a stay on the notification, the Bench said it would not like to interfere at this stage as the notification was valid only till June 30.
Medical resources had been diverted to check the spread of COVID19, it said.
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