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HindustanTimes Sun,20 Apr 2014

Survey reveals rot in backyard of rich

HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, January 10, 2013
First Published: 00:53 IST(10/1/2013) | Last Updated: 02:17 IST(10/1/2013)

It is the educated and affluent Delhiites who are most cruel to their unborn girl child, yet another study has revealed.

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In a random household survey conducted in south-west Delhi, which comprises Dwarka- Sub city, Janakpuri, Palam, etc., by the Centre for Social Research (CSR) found shocking female foeticide trends.

The dominant reasons for gender-based sex selection was found to be the belief that sons would continue the family name, fear of dowry and share in property. Maintaining female chastity was also cited as a reason for a male child preference that appalled the surveyors.

"For working class parents, leaving a child alone is of huge concern, especially if it's a girl child. They do not seem to realise that a boy child can also be sexually abused," said Ranjana Kumari, director, CSR.

As part of its campaign against female foeticide, CSR conducted a survey of 1,000 households all through 2011 and south-west Delhi was chose because of the district is worst affected.

A social audit revealed that community members in posh localities believed that sex selection is practiced by economically backward strata of society and that educated class does not hold son preference as a dominant ideology.

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People also argued that even if they get to know about sex selection cases, they would not discuss it with others. Most were not aware of the Pre conception and Pre Natal Diagnostic Techniques (Prohibition of Sex selection) Act and its implementation.

"Infrastructure for the implementation of the law is not adequate, though action has been taken against several defaulters. There still has not been a single conviction in the sex-selection cases," said Kumari.

"Somebody has to be held responsible. The government has to wake up, else by 2021 we will be sorry when we find the sex ratio perhaps dropping below 750," she added.

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