This refers to the report "Step to check female foeticide" (Feb.19). That one crore female foetuses have been aborted in two decades calls for some serious action from the government and other agencies. Rather than providing a cradle in every district to abandon girl children, the government should educate the people about the value of a girl child. This will help to balance the sex ratio in the long run.

B. Jayaprakash Narayanan,

Female foeticide is a shocking practice that has grown in the last few decades. Although the media and the government have made attempts to highlight the negative impact of pre-natal sex identification and selective abortion, the practice continues as reflected in the declining sex ratio. Minister Renuka Chowdhury's proposed scheme of cradles in every district is hardly a viable solution. Only monetary incentives and social benefits will make a girl child an asset to the family. A foster home or an orphanage is not an ideal place for a baby to grow in. As an obstetrician, I would like to see the frown turn to happiness when the birth of a girl child is announced on the labour table.

Mythili Krishnamurthy,

The Palna scheme seems excellent in its intention. All I hope and pray is that it is carried through properly. Also, I would like reputable NGOs to be consulted and taken along as partners. I also suggest that adoption procedures be made more friendly and easy for needy couples so that the children get a home as soon as possible instead of being saddled with the orphan tag for too long.

Bharatram Gaba,