May,5,2015: State Health Minister Anil Vij said the Haryana government would give Rs. 1 lakh cash award to anyone who provides information regarding sex determination tests or female foeticides to the authorities concerned.
Once the persons involved in this crime are caught and on verification of information to be correct, the person, who will provide the information, would immediately be given the cash prize, Mr. Vij said.
For this, a provision of Rs. 25 lakh token money has been provided under annual plan 2015-16, he said, adding that Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar had also given his approval.
The step has been taken in order to completely put an end to female foeticide, which has led to unbalanced sex-ratio in State, he said.
The State government is committed to strictly implement Pre-Conception and Pre-Natal Diagnostic Techniques (PCPNDT) Act in the State, he said.
Where have all the girls gone?
Because female feticide is the act of aborting a fetus because it is female.This is a major connection with the dowry system that is ingrained in India. There is a strong preference for sons over daughter exists unlike in western culture and it is also estimated that more than 10 million female fetuses have been illegally aborted in India.
The Supreme Court of India had issued directions to the Indian government and the states and union territories for stricter implementation of laws that ban pre-natal sex-selection tests and sex-selective abortions in India. A concerned Supreme Court had observed that the Pre-Conception and Pre-Natal Diagnostic Techniques (Prohibition of Sex Selection) Act 1994 (PCPNDT) that is meant to prevent female foeticide in India, has failed.
While India’s legal framework stipulates equal rights for genders, in practice, India is witness to widespread prejudice against girl child & violation of women’s reproductive rights. Number of girls per 1000 boys (Child Sex ratio or CSR) has gone down from 960 in 1998 to 914 in 2011 nationally. The trend in urban areas is worse, with a 902 CSR compared to 919 in rural areas.
This has prompted India government to declare “Child Sex Ratio” (CSR) as one of the most important health/social indicator & has set a goal to increase number of girls per 1000 boys to 935 from 914 by 2017. Despite making sex determination tests illegal & many Government & NGOs starting helpline/awareness to stop female foeticide, we are still lacking in effectively reducing female foeticide due to:
1) Lack of anonymity of the reporter (mother/concerned citizen)
2) Fear of reprisal
3) Even if reported, it’s often AFTER a forced abortion
4) The reports are often anonymous and lacks enough details for effective follow up, leading to the report going cold
5) Lack of enough volunteers for Government & NGOs to follow-up and offer individual case by case intervention.