Delhi govt for harsh penalty for female foeticide

Delhi CM Shiela Dikshit said her govt was considering imposing `heavy` fine and stricter punishment for those involved in female foeticide.

New Delhi: Expressing concern over
incidents of female foeticide, Delhi Chief Minister Shiela
Dikshit on Monday said her government was considering imposing
"heavy" fine and stricter punishment for those involved in
such crime.

"The government is mooting heavy fine and strict
punishment for those involved in such incidents," Dikshit said
after flagging off a walk at the India Gate lawns to mark the
World Population Day.

Noting that her government was determined to come down
hard on those involved in the crime, she said female foeticide
was causing imbalance in the gender ratio in the city.

As per existing legislation, any ultrasound clinic can
be closed down if it conducts pre-natal sex determination

"We will have to intensify our efforts to save the girl
child at any cost. The society will have to intensify campaign
so that the ratio of girls and boys could be made even,"
Dikshit said.

Exhorting all concerned citizens to raise their voice
against female foeticide, Dikshit said concerted efforts are
needed to stop the practice.

As per the 2011 census data, the sex ratio of 866 in
the national capital is fourth lowest among all the states and
Union territories. Daman and Diu has the lowest sex ratio of
618 female per one thousand males followed by 775 in Dadra and
Nagar Haveli and 818 in Chandigarh.

However, the overall sex ratio at the national level
has increased by 7 points since the 2001 Census to reach 940
females per 1000 male. This is the highest sex ratio recorded
since 1971 and a shade lower than 1961.

Talking about population growth, Dikshit said fast
increasing population was putting hindrance in providing
essential services to all.

"We must realise the importance of small family," the
Chief Minister said. She also administered pledge to a group
of youths to make aware people about ill effects of population

Speaking on the occasion, Health Minister AK Walia
expressed concern over decline in gender ratio and said more
efforts are needed to bring down maternal and child mortality

"In our country around 13.5 lakhs children die below the
age of one year annually whereas nine lakh children die below
the age of five years," he said.

In this context, he said the city government has decided
to implement the `Janani Shishu Suraksha Yojna`, an ambitious
programme of the Union Health Ministry to control maternal and
infant mortality rate.

The initiative that will also cover Cesarean section
deliveries envisages among other things providing free drugs
and transport to pregnant women and free treatment to sick
newborns in government health units.


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