NEW DELHI

“Sex selective abortions quit India”

The Union Ministry for Women & Child Development proposes to create a “national pledge” aimed at involving the public to protect the girl child and halt gender-biased sex selection across the country.

The Ministry is also looking for a suitable day for allowing the entire nation to join together to commit to working towards protection of the girl child.

A senior official in the Union Ministry for Women & Child Development said: “The Ministry is looking at involving the public including school children to take responsibility to protect the girl child and stop gender-biased sex selection across the country. It is working with the Union Ministry for Health & Family Welfare to create a pledge for the nation and asking the public to join in to take responsibility and actively work towards saving the girl child. Talks are also on to select a day when the entire nation will join to take the pledge.”

Meanwhile, Union Women & Child Development Minister Krishna Tirath speaking at a function organised in the Capital for public servants on Thursday said: “Gender-biased sex selection has been identified as amongst the main reasons for the declining child sex ratio across the country. The sex ratio which was 927 in 2001 fell to 914 in 2011. Also violence against women is seeing a steep rise and is a matter of serious concern.”

“This year the pledge-taking involved only public servants and we selected August 9 -- a day commemorated in the history of India as Quit India Movement -- to symbolise the collective resolve of the public servants of India to make the social evil of sex selective abortion to Quit India,” she added.

Speaking about the involvement of the Union Health Ministry, a senior official there said: “Union Health & Family Welfare Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad has written to the hospitals and health care centres to take the pledge. This follows the letter issued by the Union Ministry of Women & Child Development to all States and Union Territories and all Ministries and Departments across the country to take this pledge today.”

“But taking this movement a step further we are working at involving the public, school children and local representatives to involve them in arresting the decline in child sex ratio across the country. We are also looking at organising rallies, lectures and shows to drive home the point that sex selective abortion will not allow the country to grow,” he added.