Gujarat to create awareness in blocks with low sex ratio

Gujarat is one of the states with the lowest sex ratios in the country, with official figures putting it at only 864 females to 1,000 males.

india Updated: Oct 01, 2006 13:39 IST

Alarmed by increasing female foeticide and booming abortion-related business, Gujarat government has identified 43 tehsils with lowest sex ratios to create social awareness against the cruel practice.

"The tehsils (blocks), spread over various districts of Gujarat, house some of the gravest offenders, who have been mercilessly killing female foetuses," Principal Secretary and Commissioner, Women and Child Development, JS Rana, said.

Gujarat is one of the states with the lowest sex ratios in the country, with official figures putting it at only 864 females to 1,000 males. Particularly, the situation in north Gujarat is said to be appalling.

Officials attribute the dipping sex ratio to a full-fledged "female foeticide industry", which runs into several thousands of rupees. This includes equipment for scanning and termination procedure, besides the pharmaceutical division.

Till recently, the government had no clue about the size of the mammoth industry, except that medicos were running the clandestine trade right under their nose, they said.

In spite of enforcing strict regulations against foetus scanning in the state, only two cases of the offence have been reportedly booked in the state.

"What is required at present is a change in the social mindset of people and to achieve this the government has planned to hold social awareness campaigns, educative programmes and community gatherings to sensitise the society," Rana said.

First Published: Oct 01, 2006 13:39 IST