The Fascinating Double Life of Haryana’s Pregnant Agents

Gender

The Fascinating Double Life of Haryana’s Pregnant Agents

Illustration: Sushant Ahire

R

adhika Phogat is 22, a housewife in an urban village pregnant with her second child. But her life in Charkhi Dadri, with Rajbir, her wrestler-turned-construction-contractor husband is anything but predictable. On the day of her “mission”, Phogat waddled into the front seat of her Hyundai Santro with Rajbir, and sent up a silent prayer and a tiny apology for the child in her womb. After all, it was her baby that Phogat was going to use – to save the lives of many other unborn ones.

The Phogats are undercover agents for the Haryana Health Department. In a state with one of the lowest sex ratios in the country, they help unearth and implicate ultrasound clinics that conduct illegal sex determination tests, a crucial link in a chain that ends in female foeticide.

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