Taking into account the discrimination against the girl child from the earliest stages of life through her childhood into adulthood, and in order to support girl children survive and reach their full potential, the first National Conference on “Save the Girl Child” as a social endeavour has been organised in Vigyan Bhawan, New Delhi on Monday.
Prime Minister in his inaugural address of the National Meeting on “Save the Girl Child” called on the elective representatives to consider his responsible duty to be active participant in the national campaign for saving the girl child.
Unfortunately the societal discriminations against women commence in our very homes much before the girl child is born. But no government can tackle this grave problem alone. Although the government must be active in mobilising public opinion, it needs active support of civil societies involvement in the national campaign to save the girl child.
Some medical practitioners assisted by unscrupulous parents illegally involving in the corrupt practices of detecting sex of the pre-natal child and malpractices of female foeticide must be punished severely.
As per the statistics of the child sex ratio the data reveals that the growing economic prosperity and education levels have not led to a corresponding alleviation in this acute problem. The decline in girls belonging to 0-6 age group per 1000 boys from 962 in 1981 to 927 in the last census has been indeed shocking.
Unfortunately what is most shocking that the evil practice of female foeticide has been recorded much higher in some richer states of the country comprising Punjab with only 798 girls, Haryana 819, Delhi 868 and Gujarat 883 girls per 1000 boys in the 2001 Census.
The year 2008 has been quite crucial for the girl child as the Government of India in this year has launched several schemes to restrict the malpractice of female foeticide and encouraging them for better upbringing of girl child and to educate her.
A conditional cash transfer scheme ‘Dhan Laxmi’ has been launched this year to provide a set of staggered financial incentives to the families of the girl child on fulfilling specific conditionalities including birth registration, immunisation, school enrolment and delay marriage of the girl child till the age of 18 years.
The Department of Post in India had also announced that Postal Life Insurance (PLI) was going to introduce Girl Child Insurance very soon.
The National Meeting on “Save the Girl Child” had been organised by the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare.
The inaugural session was also addressed by Dr. Anbumani Ramadoss, Minister of Health & Family Welfare, Smt. Renuka Choudhury, Minister of State for Women & Child Development and Smt. Panabaka Lakshmi, Minister of State for Health & Family Welfare. The meeting was also being attended by Health Ministers of various States and the stakeholders.
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