CHANDIGARH: For the first time in a decade, there are more than 900 girls per 1000 boys in Haryana, Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar has announced, setting a target of 950 in the next six months.
“The sex ratio at birth for December 2015 has crossed the 900 mark with 903 girls per 1,000 boys,” Chief Minister Khattar said. He said 12 districts had powered the state beyond the 900-mark, with Sirsa topping the list at 999 girls per 1000 boys.
Haryana, which borders national capital Delhi, has for long had one of the country’s worst sex ratios with reports of rampant female foeticide and infanticide. The 2011 census said the northern state had 879 girls for every 1,000 boys. Kerala had 1084 girls for every 1000 boys.
Haryana has 12 of the 100 worst districts in India for child sex ratio.
“In Sirsa district, sex ratio at birth increased from 948 in October 2015, to 978 in November, and to 999 in December,” Mr Khattar said, adding that a big nexus of quacks, health workers, touts and registered medical practitioners was busted by the Sirsa police with the help of the health department and about 40 people were arrested and convicted.
He said Panchkula, Karnal, Fatehabad, Gurgaon, Sonipat, Jind, Rewari, Mewat, Bhiwani, Mahendragarh, and Hisar districts too have crossed the 900-mark.
The chief minister said the improvement was a result of the “Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao (Save Daughters, Teach Daughters)” campaign launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi from the state’s Panipat town in January last year.
“A target to achieve sex ratio above 950 within the next six months has now been set for the entire state,” he said.
Mr Khattar said tough measures were taken while implementing the Pre-Conception and Pre-Natal Diagnostic Techniques (PCPNDT) Act, 1994, and Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act, 1971. Both laws prescribe stringent criminal action against medical professionals who perform sex determination tests for foetuses and illegal abortions.
130 police cases have been registered under the two acts since June 2015. 18 cases of sale of sex selection drugs to ensure male babies were registered and about 50 case were lodged for illegal sale of abortion kits.