The Union Government has extended the Beti Bachao Beti Padho Scheme in additional 61 districts across 11 States and Union Territories with low Child Sex Ratio. It was announced by the Women and Child Development Minister Maneka Gandhi while addressing the function in New Delhi. About Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao Scheme The scheme is designed to address the issue of declining Child Sex Ratio and related issues of disempowerment of women through a life cycle continuum.
The main objective is to prevent gender biased sex selective elimination by strict enforcement of laws with stringent punishment to violators. It was launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in January 2015 from Haryana in 100 districts of the country to address the issue of declining Child Sex Ratio. The Union Ministry of Women and Child Development (WCD), is the nodal agency for the implementation of the scheme.
The trend of decline in the Child Sex Ratio (CSR), defined as number of girls per 1000 of boys between 0-6 years of age, has been unabated since 1961. The decline from 945 in 1991 to 927 in 2001 and further to 918 in 2011 is alarming. The decline in the CSR is a major indicator of women disempowerment. CSR reflects both, pre-birth discrimination manifested through gender biased sex selection, and post birth discrimination against girls. Social construct discriminating against girls on the one hand, easy availability, affordability and subsequent misuse of diagnostic tools on the other hand, have been critical in increasing Sex Selective Elimination of girls leading to low Child Sex Ratio.
Since coordinated and convergent efforts are needed to ensure survival, protection and empowerment of the girl child, Government has announced Beti Bachao Beti Padhao initiative. This is being implemented through a national campaign and focussed multi sectoral action in 100 selected districts low in CSR, covering all States and UTs. This is a joint initiative of Ministry of Women and Child Development, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare and Ministry of Human Resource Development.
The objectives of this initiative are:
Prevention of gender biased sex selective elimination
Ensuring survival & protection of the girl child
Ensuring education and participation of the girl child