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Guests: Siddharth Mishra, Consulting Editor, Millennium Post; Anil Verma, Head, ADR; Shailja Chandra, Former Chief Secretary of Delhi; RM Sinha, Advocate, Delhi Court
Anchor- Frank Pereira
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Desh Deshantar: Attacks on Doctors: gaps and issues in Heath care system
Guest: Shailja Chandra ,Former Secretary, Ministry of Health & Family Welfare GOI; Rajib Dasgupta, Professor, Centre of social Medicine And Community Health Social Sciences JNU; M. Wali, Sr Physician; Rakesh Kumar Gupta, President, Delhi Medical Association
Anchor: Arfa Khanum Sherwani
Air Date: March 30, 2017
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National Health Policy: what does it entail?
Guest: Abhijit Das, Director, Centre for Health and Social Justice;T.K.Rajalakshmi, Dy. Editor Frontline;Shailja Chandra -Former Secretary Ministry of Health & Family Welfare GOI;Rajib Dasgupta, Professor, Centre of social Medicine And Community Health Social Sciences, JNU;Abhijit Das, Director, Centre for Health and Social Justice
Anchor: Arfa Khanum
Air Date: March 17, 2017
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Published on 1 Jan 2017
Thanking people for their support and co-operation to his demonetisation drive, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on December 31 made a series of announcements reiterating his government’s focus on the welfare of farmers and the poor.
He was making a televised address to the nation on New Year’s eve and said he was grateful for the patience that people had shown amid a cash crunch that followed the ban on Rs 500 and Rs 1000 notes that he announced on November 8.
The decision was aimed at combating tax evasion and money laundering and the Prime Minister praised the people for working shoulder to shoulder with the government to defeat corruption.
Shailaja Chandra, former Secretary in the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare and the Chairman of the Public Grievances Commission and Appellate Authority under the Delhi Right to Information Act, says: “A poor woman can earn anything between Rs1-3 lakh from surrogacy, and with debts and growing expenditures hanging over her head, she agrees or is forced to agree. In most cases, it’s actually the women’s relatives and middlemen who compel them to go through it.”
She adds that the myths around being childless and the reluctance to consider adoption need to be addressed through proper awareness campaigns, and adoption promoted as a first choice. “Not only is that humane, but is also less exploitative on the surrogate, who has to be bolstered with hormones to prepare her to accept the embryo.”
Chandra also believes that IVF centres need to be registered. “The process should be open only to Indians or if one partner is of Indian origin. We must not permit foreigners to enter into surrogacy arrangements because it is akin to using Indian women to make a takeaway baby for them. While foreigners are generous in looking after the woman’s health and nutrition, problems of citizenship, and fulfilling the responsibilities attached to accepting the infant, even if it suffers from physical or mental deficiencies, can arise.”
About how it can be checked if the ban is being upheld once the Bill is passed, Chandra says, “Such a law, if made, will remain like so many other laws — unimplementable. There is no machinery to police what happens between two or three people by mutual consent; desperate couples and future surrogates’ families will find a way of doing it secretly. Can a woman who leaves for her native village for nine months be taken to task? It’s tough to push such laws. Do you think kidney transplant rackets have stopped and all such transplants are altruistic?”
The issue of demonetisation has divided political and public opinion. Inside Parliament, there have been stormy scenes, and outside at ATMs and banks, there have been serpentine queues. There are stories of hardship and suffering, but some also say the pain is worth the gain. On We The People, we look at the politics and economics of demonetisation. What is its aim – hit at black money or digitise the economy? Will it net the big fish? Will Modi government’s gamble pay off? We get you the stories of those who are struggling to cope with this move as well as of those who have adapted to the digital economy.