As part of its efforts to improve the skewed sex ratio in the country and curb female foeticide, the Indian Medical Association (IMA) has launched a flagship campaign ‘Welcome the Girl Child’ and has asked all its 2.5 lakh members to support it.
The IMA recently issued a circular wherein it announced several initiatives and urged its members across 1,700 branches to take part.
The initiatives include supporting a girl child by announcing a scholarship of Rs 500 per month for her educational and skill development activities, opening a fixed deposit of Rs 1.5 lakh and depositing the interest in the girl’s account till she becomes 18. The principal amount can be taken back after that.
Members have been urged to organise a skill development programme for girls. Another initiative is ‘Support a Girl Child’ for free heart surgery, if the parents cannot afford where members can refer to headquarters for help.
They were urged to adopt girls’ schools and give health lectures and conduct health check-up camps’, distribute iron folic supplement to the girl child in schools and ‘Create awareness about the Child Sexual Abuse Sutras to Girl Child’.
The programme recommends waiving off of consultancy fee on birth of a girl child and helping those who cannot afford get treatment.
IMA urged its members to participate in ‘Campaign 950’ to bring the child sex ratio to 950 girls per 1000 boys and expose black sheep in the medical fraternity indulging in female feticide.
“It is disheartening to see that the age-old discrimination against women continues to exist in our country. It is for this reason, that we have launched this flagship campaign aimed at educating our members on how to counsel parents, help support girl children and in-turn save their lives,” said Dr K K Aggarwal, Secretary General of IMA.