PM hits out at Punjab, Gujarat, Delhi for poor sex ratio

April 28th, 2008 - 1:53 pm ICT by admin  

A file-photo of Manmohan Singh

New Delhi, April 28 (IANS) Terming female foeticide “inhuman and uncivilised”, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh Monday hit out at developed states like Gujarat, Punjab and Delhi for their dwindling sex ratio. “Child sex ratio statistics in the 0-6 age group for the past four decades have been showing a continuous decline. The decline in girls per 1,000 boys from 962 in 1981 to 927 in the year 2001 is indeed alarming,” Manmohan Singh said while addressing the Save the Girl Child conference here.

“The census figures illustrate that it is some of the richer states of the country where the problem is most acute and these states include Punjab which had only 798 girls (per 1,000 boys), Haryana 819, Delhi 868 and Gujarat 883 girls per 1,000 boys in the 2001 Census.

“This indicates that growing economic prosperity and education levels have not led to a corresponding mitigation in this acute problem,” the prime minister pointed out.

Manmohan Singh reiterated that gender related deprivation is an interlocked situation.

“Female illiteracy, obscurantist social practices like child marriage or early marriage, dowry, poor nutritional entitlements, taboos on women in public places all make the Indian women and especially the Indian girl child extremely vulnerable.”

He said discrimination against women begins in our very homes, “even before the girl child is born”.

“One of the most inhuman, uncivilised and reprehensible practices is the practice of female foeticide.

“The patriarchal mindset and preference for male children is compounded by unethical conduct on the part of some medical practitioners assisted by unscrupulous parents who illegally offer sex determination services.”

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