Chennai sculptors highlight skewed 'Child Sex Ratio' through sand art
Sculptors on Tuesday turned the spotlight on the alarming "Child Sex Ratio" as they unveiled their sand art on a beach here.
Bright sunlight falling on the sand sculptors glittering in the open sky and carrying the message of "dawn of hope and the end of darkness", an NGO raised awareness about gender equality.
According to the last census, the male-female ratio has dropped to below 900/1000 in nearly seven states and 135 districts across the country.
According to Jacintha, programme officer of the NGO, the campaign aimed at highlighting the skewed ratio, which is a stark indication of gender inequality in India.
"The cause is to address the issue of adverse sex ratio and to address gender inequality in our society," she said.
In Tamil Nadu, the child sex ratio has come down to 919 girls for every 1,000 boys from 952 girls per 1,000 boys. In places like Cuddalore and Ariyalur, the number of girl children has declined due to improved technology that helps parents know the child's sex before hand, said officials of the NGO.
Lack of education, the low status of girls and widespread poverty are the main factors why girl babies were killed or dumped with little chance of survival.
Activists and officials say financial pressures associated with dowries are so great that parents have been aborting female foetuses for decades after discovering their gender through ultrasound examinations, despite the practice being illegal.
A 2011 study in The Lancet medical journal found up to 12 million Indian girls had been aborted in the past three decades.
Some parents kill girls or fail to save them from preventable diseases, leading to alarmingly skewed child gender ratios. There were 919 girls to every 1,000 boys in 2011 compared with 976 in 1961, says the Census of India.
"According to a survey conducted by the NGO, 7000 girl child go missing in the country everyday," said Jacintha.
"In India, everyday 7000 girl children are being missed so the reason behind is really when we see violence related to women and sex selective abortion and female infanticide, foeticide, there are various reasons, so from womb to tomb, there are many reasons for a child, a girl, a woman to be abused physically, mentally, socially and we can say at all levels," he said.
(Posted on 19-02-2014)