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    » 03/05/2008, 00.00

    INDIA

    Three thousand dollars per family to rear a daughter



    The programme has been announced by the central government and is aimed at poor families in 7 states. The target is to discourage the illegal, but still widespread practise of female foeticide.

    New Delhi (AsiaNews/Agencies) – The central government intends to offer 3 thousand dollars to poor families who choose to rear their daughters.   The program aims to discourage the widespread practise of female infanticide that has led to a marked imbalance between sexes in many areas across the Union.  Since 1994 selective abortion has been banned in India, but the practise still continues illegally.

    According to research published in2006 by the British medical journal Lancet, in the last 20 years over 10 million female children have been aborted.  In Indian culture, male children are preferred because they transmit the family name, become an income source and are able to support ageing parents, while female children is destined to leave the family and moreover cost money, because of the dowry they must receive on marriage.  In States worst hit by the phenomenon such as Punjab, the male:female ratio stands at 1000:793.

    According to the new government program, poor families in 7 states will receive economic aid paid in install aments the first at the birth of a daughter and again at different stages throughout her childhood up to the age of 18 years India's Women and Child Development Minister Renuka Choudhury said she hoped the scheme would encourage families to look upon girls “as an asset rather than a liability”. Human rights activists have welcomed the move but also expressed the initiative will go beyond the poor in the future.

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    See also

    27/03/2004 China
    Risk of abortion for 40-60 million female children over ten year period


    14/07/2007 INDIA
    The Indian Church “sceptical” of the birth register
    The draft law, which aims to put an end to abortions of female foetuses, is simply another form of birth control. In the last 20 years more than 10 million female foetuses have been aborted.

    13/01/2006 INDIA
    Doctors must be more responsible vis-à-vis abortion, says Indian Church
    The secretary general of the Catholic Bishops' Conference is shocked by the Lancet study on selective abortions on India and stresses the need for ethics in the medical profession.

    10/10/2012 INDIA
    Three million girls "missing" as a result of selective abortions and infanticide
    The 2011 figures are from a study released by India's Central Statistical Organisation. Tomorrow, the world marks International Day of the Girl. "Government, civil society and families should work closely together" against patriarchal gender bias, says doctor member of the Pontifical Academy for Life. Maharashtra wants selective abortion to be treated as murder.

    14/12/2011 INDIA
    Eight arrests after selective female abortion racket uncovered
    A couple of doctors and their support staff ran the racket. According to India’s 2011 census, the country’s sex ratio is just 940 females per 1000 males, more skewed in cities than in rural areas. According to a member of the Pontifical Academy for Life, men will outnumber women by 20 per cent in 20 years.



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