With the district showing a positive trend in reversing the child sex ratio in the age group of 0-6 years from April to December 2012, health officials in Ahmednagar are now taking up the cause of saving the girl child on a war footing. After District Collector Dr Sanjeev Kumar voiced concern over “missing girls”, activists working in the field have received a fillip to their awareness programmes.
As against 838 girls per 1,000 boys registered by the Integrated Child Development Scheme in 2011, the district now boasts of a ratio of 898 girls per 1,000 boys. According to Ahmednagar Civil Surgeon Dr R K Nitturkar, most of the 14 tehsils in the district have shown a positive trend with the child sex ratio climbing to more than 900 girls per 1,000 boys at some places.
Tehsils like Akole, Shevgaon, Karjat, Shrirampur, Kopargaon and others have shown a definite rise in the number of girls born between April and December 2012. Dr Asaram Khade, state consultant for Pre-Conception and Pre-Natal Diagnostic Techniques (PCPNDT) Act, said though it was a positive trend, they would have “wait and analyse the impact of the implementation of the PCPNDT Act before arriving at any conclusion”.
In the district, activists like Dr Sudha Kakriya and others have been consistently interacting with district health officials to create awareness about the PCPNDT Act and saving the girl child.
More than 24,000 youngsters took an oath recently on the issue while several organisations are chipping in with efforts to generate a ‘Lakhpati fund’ whereby contributions can be made in the form of fixed deposits on the birth of a girl in a family.
“We have divided villages into green and red zones that signal the danger posed to the existence of a girl child,” Kakriya told The Indian Express. Along with government officials, activists have trained anganwadi workers. gramsevaks, police and others. At mass weddings, couples take an oath to raise a girl child with dignity,” Kakriya pointed out.