India’s struggle against female foeticide

Sunday, May 20, 2012
By Saima Azim*

Photo: UNICEF/Jason Taylor/2006
We live in a nation where Durga is worshiped and unborn girls are killed, where the president is a woman and expecting mothers are forced to abort their daughters for the sake of so-called ‘izzat’ of the family. Welcome to India…!

Ever since 1970’s, when the technology of sex determination came into practice, female foeticide has been practiced shamefully. Though the govt. had passed Pre-Conception and Pre-Natal Diagnostic Technique Act in 1994 (PCPNDT) according to which sex determination of the unborn fetus and female foeticide  is an offence but the census report of 2011 clearly states that the law is just another ‘sheet of paper’. According to reports, there are just 914females/1000males in India and around 10, 00,000 unborn females are killed per year! Does this data horrify you?

Well there is more, in past 20years, 10 million girls in India have been lost to female foeticide and the one of the worst result of this crime has been human trafficking in which, shockingly, the capital of the country stands first.

Just because the country has a handful of powerful women, the dark side of the nation cannot be neglected. The capital of the nation-Delhi where the so called high class modern people  live, stands 3rd in female foeticide(we can relate it to crime against women in Delhi!),succeeded by Punjab and Haryana. The terrifying sex ratio of Delhi (866females/1000 males) showcases the real face of the city and the thing which is even more shocking is that the sex ratio is most skewed in VVIP areas  like Connaught place (828females/1000males), Chanakyapuri (787females/1000males) Delhi Cantonment (773/1000 males), and the highest being in the Central Delhi (892females/1000males). These are not mere statics and data; they explain the real meaning of ‘independent’ Indian society where the women are still struggling to breathe free.

But all is not dull and gloomy. If there are families who burry their daughters alive then there are families who have the courage to pick up a girl from a dustbin and give her a respectable life. If there are families who consider girls as burden and insult for the family then there are parents too who raise their daughters to be doctors, politicians and business women. In fact various people with human qualities have come forward to raise a voice against this cold blooded crime.Various NGO’s have provided rehabilitation and aid to the victims, many social activist and media persons have campaigned to save the girl child and most recently the much talked talk show ‘Satyamev Jayate’ which did not just capture the audience attention but their heart too. On the show the efforts of the journalists who had played with their lives just to disclose this market of crime, were also highly appreciated and it’s been just a week and the response have been tremendously positive, legal notice to 65 medical centers has been sent in Madhya Pradesh, the govt of Maharashtra too is appreciating the initiative and has asked the actor himself to help the govt. in saving the girl child. The Chief Minister of Rajasthan himself met Aamir Khan and promised quick and effective measures.

All these efforts and the success of these initiatives prove that, indeed, we our self are the ‘magic wand’. We will bring the wind of change in India; we will let our daughters enjoy their right of living. We will.

(*Saima Azim is a Freelance Journalist. She can be reached at Views expressed are her own.)
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Write comments
20 May 2012 at 01:52 delete

Literally, Indian press should be applauded for its work in this area.

20 May 2012 at 12:54 delete

nice saima....u are writing well......and yeah female foeticide is major social crime in india....

20 May 2012 at 19:12 delete

Awesome effort yar..

21 May 2012 at 09:05 delete

Its very sad that social issues like this still persist in our country where technology has taken a new place in our life & still we feel very proud to say that India is growing to become a great power.... Thats a very shamefull growth i suppose..

Shraddha Singh
24 May 2012 at 15:37 delete

Awesome.. Way to go Saima..

26 May 2012 at 14:58 delete

Gud goin saima... Nyc article