Dr Rainuka Dagar, director (research) with the Institute for Development and Communication (IDC), said on Tuesday that the ‘Beti Padhao Beti Bachao Andolan’ launched by the NDA government would not have much impact on improving the sex ratio in Haryana.
Drawing from her recently published work - Gender Identity and Violence: Female Deselection in India - Dagar said till the benefits given to the daughters by the government did not in some way accrue back to the family, the situation of the female child in Haryana would remain the same.
“Female foeticide has to be seen in the larger context of violence against women. It is neither new nor confined to particular regions, population or situations,” she said, while talking to HT about her book.
She opined that if the problem of female deselection (female foeticide, female infanticide and high female child mortality) was explained through single and simplistic aspects of social reality like dowry, the true causes tended to get ignored, leading policy makers to wrong or inadequate solutions. She said causes for female deselection actually lied n complex social relations, identity-based hierarchies, group survival considerations in a society, etc., among other factors
Dagar added that girl child neglect was linked to the family and household survival. “If the incentives given to the daughter under a government scheme in some way help the household, there could be a change.”
“In Punjab, in order to study the problem of female foeticide there is a need to understand that masculine authority is integrated into social relations and is strongly linked to the religio-cultural identity,” she explained.
“I have identified some factors affecting the life chances of a girl. One for instance is peace and prosperity. In such times, historically we have seen improvement in sex ratio. Violent movements had an immediate impact on the deselection of the girl child. Now salaried classes and urban areas are showing an improvement in sex ratio in Punjab,” she added.