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Raj Kumar Makkad (Adv P & H High Court Chandigarh)     03 April 2011

Why to Discriminate Girl Child?

Indians are now 1.21 billion strong. There are 181 million more Indians today than there were 10 years ago but at least our population is no longer growing as fast as it was in the past. We are also more literate now than we were in 2001. A larger number of women are being educated than before and, consequently, the gap between literate males and literate females is speedily narrowing. But Indians are also killing more female babies either before or after they are born than they were a decade ago. These and several other demographic and social trends have been revealed by the 2011 Census provisional data released on Thursday by the office of the Registrar-General and Census-Commissioner of India. Some of these have given us a reason to smile while other statistics have given us much reason to worry. Overall, it is a mixed report — surely, there are areas that need a lot more work but at the same time we, as a nation, deserve to give ourselves a pat on the back for the progress that we have made in other crucial sectors. Take a look at population growth, for example. It is true that the number of people we have added to our national populace since 2001 is equivalent to the entire population of Brazil and perhaps many would baulk at the idea that India is still on course to take over China by 2030, but one should seek comfort in the fact that our decadal growth rate has dropped for the first time in almost a century. The only other time a similar drop was noted was during the decade of 1911-1921. Our current growth rate is 17.64 per cent, which is down from the previous decade's 21.5 per cent — the sharpest decline in growth rate since 1947. But perhaps the most heartening development in all of this is the progress that the nation has made in the education sector. Today, 74.04 per cent of Indians are literate, as compared to 64.83 per cent in 2001 — a phenomenal hike of 9.21 per cent that will serve India well as it prepares to take on a greater role in the international arena. Additionally, the fact that female literacy level has increased — from 53.67 per cent in 2001 to 65.46 per cent in 2011 — more than the male literacy level, which has gone from 75.26 per cent to 82.14 per cent, serves as the cherry on the cake. There is little doubt that the increase in female literacy and the consequent empowerment of women is one of the reasons why India has registered a drop in the population growth rate. Yet amid all these positive numbers, the fact that India's child s*x ratio has dipped to 914 girls for every 1000 boys is particularly disturbing. The numbers have consistently declined in the past decades — from 978 girls in 1961 to 927 in 2001 and now down to 914 — and is evidence of India's failure to fight discrimination against the girl child. More specifically, it points to a greater need for the Government to effectively implement the existing law that prohibits pre-natal s*x determination test, which is often followed by abortion if the foetus is found to be that of a female. Additionally, it also emphasises the fact that education alone cannot bring about radical change in social mindsets. Let us not forget that female foeticide is highly prevalent even among the rich and the educated. Society as a whole needs to change and learn to value its girls and women before we can expect any positive change in the child s*x ratio. The 2011 Census has shown that India is capable of bringing about collective change. Now, it is time we apply ourselves to the next challenge.


 3 Replies

stylistperson (Director)     08 April 2011

Because they grow up then misuse of 498a.


Sorry, Just kidding. Take it easy.



stylistperson (Director)     08 April 2011

Indian culture is very nero so i think due to social pressure many people discriminate Girl Child. However, with timebeing Indian society will be similar to western society then number of females will be increased then men.

Bhartiya No. 1 (Nationalist)     08 April 2011

Surely it is a grey area, and matter of great concern. Their happiness and well being must improve for the betterment of the society and for a healthy Nation.

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