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Women are being denied the right to be born in India

Punam Dwivedi
By Punam Dwivedi

March 14, 2010
Author is a development journalist and was on her recent visit in Eastern Uttar Pradesh to cover this issue. She can be contacted at:

The declining sex ratio over the past several years shows that girls and women not only face indignities and gender inequality in society, they are even denied the right to be born if their families do not wish so. In fact many families do not wish their women folk to deliver baby daughters.

Female foeticide is still a problem in 21 century in India. It is a matter of great concern that today in India we are discussing a thing like female foeticide. It speaks of a whole system gone corrupt, a whole society involved in conspiracy against women, against destruction of half the population of society, at the hands of monstrous practices becoming more and more rampant in a society fast losing its secular, social, and humanistic fabric.

It is pertinent to note that the figure shows the fall in the juvenile sex ratio is much higher in the economically developed States in India. There is steep fall in sex ratio in States like, Punjab, Haryana, Gujarat and Maharashtra, along with the Union territories of Delhi and Chandigarh. In Punjab there are only 874 females per 1,000 males. The situation in Haryana, Gujarat and Maharashtra is also similar - the females are 861, 921 and 922 respectively per 1,000 males. Kerala is the only State were females are 1,058 per 1,000 males.

“Today women are being denied the right to be born. This is more prevalent in the more prosperous urban areas where there is an easy access to techniques of sex selective abortions, despite a legal ban on such practices. So prosperity seems to be anti woman,” says Dr. Sabu George, a senior social activist whose relentless efforts of the last 25 years have brought the issue of the female foeticide to the national forefront.

“The sex ratio continues to be unfavorable towards women. In this context, medical practitioners are major culprits as they are perpetrating the problem due to unethical practices and vested commercial interests with scant regard to PCPNDT Act. But now the time has come when we need to unite for mass mobilization so that we can fight against this social and medico-legal concern,” says Dr. Neelam Singh, Chief Functionary of Vatsalya working against Female Foeticide.

She further says that in UP, 50% of the doctors are involved in illegal abortions, driven solely by greed. She cites some cases in Bihar where in the absence on this technology people hired the traditional health attendant to kill the infant girl child for a paltry some of Rs.50. She therefore felt that there is an urgent need for a more gender sensitive curriculum for medical students,”.

People come from western UP (which is more prosperous in comparison to Eastern UP) to Eastern UP to buy bride. There was a case in eastern UP, where a girl Aneeta (name changed) unconsciously got married with four men. After marriage when she got to know that she has four husbands, and she was not allowed to meet anyone and not allowed even talk to her parents, she went away at her in law’s home. After coming at her parents home she was not even able to speak anything due to fear.

Recently there was a lot of hue and cry to give 33 per cent reservation of Indian women in Parliament. However, they are not raising their voice against this heinous crime. It’s a shame of Indian democracy and for all responsible citizens who are involved in this practice.

Posted on: March 14, 2010 09:43 PM IST


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