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The missing girl child…

January 24, 2010
by

Indian government announced that the country would celebrate January 24th every year as ‘National Girl Child Day’.

Why do we need a special day to spread awareness about girl child?
Why is it that even today one gender finds it tough to be part of mainstream society?

Meet Chutki…..go here to see her playing to her heart’s content.
She will steal your heart…..I guarantee you that…..
Just don’t steal her life……and all that is rightfully hers…

Another Chutki could have been someone’s daughter….
But she was killed before she was even born…

This Chutki too, is a product of someone’s imagination, an animation on the computer, nothing more…
For,she too ,battles to come into this world….
She is fighting to be born…
To be someone’s daughter..

A family that will not just love her but make her feel cherished too….Daughters….so much has been written about them…

Here in India, daughters, those of us who were lucky enough to be born, are fighting a battle so that daughters continue to be born in the years to come..

In this land, where women have been blessed since ages with ”सौ पुत्रवती भव ”(May you be blessed with a hundred sons) ……the battle ..nay, the war becomes even tougher..But it is not just about the girls who are being killed even as we speak, still in the womb, not allowed even a glimpse of this world. Not even a breath.

It is also about those girls who are killed immediately after they are born. Female infanticide they call it.
If, however, the girl is lucky enough to escape these two hells, then she has more lying in wait for her.’
Malnutrition, a bias towards her, and preferential treatment for her brothers,’dowry death ‘awaits her after she gets married.
These are the missing women of India.

This is the tale of a society so grotesque, one that worships millions of goddesses everyday and yet murders its daughters without even a qualm.

[Human populations in most countries have a natural gender ratio of about a 100 men to 105 women.In 1986, based on an average expected ratio for third world countries (which was slightly reduced from that for developed countries), the Nobel Laureate, Dr. Amartya Sen, calculated that approximately 37 million women were “missing” from India. These were women who should have been part of the population but could not be accounted for.

The term “missing,” first used by Dr. Sen actually means eliminated.

The elimination however continued, even escalated. Now, 22 years later, it is estimated about 50 Million Women have been systematically purged from India’s population, targeted only because they were female. This is perhaps what makes it one of the worst genocides in human history. And it is silent. And ongoing. The causes of this elimination are primarily female foeticide, female infanticide and dowry murders. because to call them simply deaths absolves the ‘murderers’ of all blame. All the three links above are videos.
Information courtesy- http://50millionmissing.wordpress.com/]

———————————————-
They will fight for all that is ours…..
They will heal…
They will teach new generations…..
They will be carers,nurturers,doctors,lawyers,soldiers,professors….
They will keep this world safe for those not yet born….

But first, just let them be born…..

In a country, where blessings for sons have been present since ages and where none exist for daughters, it is time that we made some…
So, next time gather up your courage, challenge some old, deeply entrenched dogmas and give a blessing from your heart…

”सौ पुत्रीवती भव ”
”May you be blessed with a hundred daughters”

Believe me, no one will be as grateful as the one for whom you have spoken…


Imagine a world without the girl child….or are we already close to making this a horrendous reality?

[This was published on this blog almost a year back. To read the entire article please go here.]

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19 Comments leave one →
  1. January 24, 2010 8:54 am

    Every word rings true. Look at the numbers of the ‘missing’ women we are talking of here! And yet we have people questioning whether gender inequality exists (!!!!) at all. One lady even commented on a post of mine that the 55 word story about partiality shown by parents to sons was ‘exaggeration’ on my part!! And some others wonder why girls should be given an exemption of fees in school.
    Why are only sons a blessing?? Why not ”May you be blessed with a hundred daughters” indeed??!!

    It IS grotesque, this worshiping the female as Goddess but not letting it be born and if at all born, placing hurdles along her way at every step!

  2. January 24, 2010 9:24 am

    It is indeed a shame that we need to dedicate a special day for girl child. But why do we need that? — To spread awareness-awareness about gender equality-about missing girl child-about female feticide.

    An eye opener post on the plight of girl child in South Asia, Indyeah. The statistics are scary because we know that it is true. Still people joke about gender inequality and try to brush aside calling any such awareness as feminist movement.

    Sonogram is banned but still people find out the gender and abort the female fetus even when it is risky. It happens even in the so called educated society. Everyone needs a son- a son to take family name forward. Ask them about their great grandfather’s name and they won’t have a clue about him. What tradition are we talking about then?

    The tradition is taken forward by the girl- one who actually brings a child into this world. It is time for this generation to wake up and bring all chutkis into the world.

  3. January 24, 2010 12:21 pm

    I’m so blessed to be born in a family that cherishes girls and I’m doubly blessed to have a daughter of my own…

    When we were younger (my sis & I), my dad always got asked why he didn’t try for a son to take his name forward…His standard reply was “What is so good about my name that it should be taken forward…Anway, I’ll be dead and gone, so why should I care if my name continues on?”

    Very well written…It’s sad that a day had to be dedicated to the girl child just to spread awareness…

    • January 24, 2010 9:46 pm

      “His standard reply was “What is so good about my name that it should be taken forward…Anyway, I’ll be dead and gone, so why should I care if my name continues on?”

      Loved his response, Bones.

  4. January 24, 2010 3:18 pm

    what a beautiful post indy… Its sad but a much needed move I think

  5. January 24, 2010 8:42 pm

    It is indeed sad that we need a day like this, but I am thankful that we have. It is the least that the govt can do.

    I just hope that the awareness percolates down and people stop thinking of discriminating against girls right from the womb..

  6. January 25, 2010 6:25 am

    So sad, but its a fact we are living with. It must change.

  7. January 25, 2010 6:27 am

    The appalling figures indicate how sickeningly ingrained our thoughts are even today. Hence the need for more awareness to value your girl-child.
    I hope a day comes when people will not think twice to bless their daughters ‘sau-putrivati bhava’ . I know I will not think twice while blessing mine 🙂

  8. January 25, 2010 12:17 pm

    Hi. Came here via Monika’s blog.

    Totally with you.

    I volunteer for an NGO that works for abandoned girl children.

    We
    a. run a home for abandoned baby girls
    b. educate them and train them to be financially independent
    c. help women thrown out of their homes (for producing girls) become independent
    d. advocate the cause we believe in – by talking to folks in hamlets/villages/communities

    It is hard work – it takes a lot to change mindsets. But every foetus not aborted because it is female is a success story for us.

    If you have any ideas/sources that link up with this, do ping me. Thanks.

  9. January 25, 2010 1:44 pm

    I came here through the link on IHM’s post as this is something I feel so strongly about (http://thehypermom.blogspot.com/2009/11/some-other-children.html)

    And the more I read-the more helpless and frustrated I feel. All the education and development over the years seems to be such a waste when it comes to the way our society treats it’s women. Can we do something about it?

  10. Lakshmi permalink
    January 26, 2010 3:24 am

    I feel helpless about this need to have a special day for girl children. Then again it is better than ignoring the problem. The change has to come from each parent, to be able to be proud of the child being born irrespective of gender. Girls seem to need more push to get out of being trapped in a stereotypical upbringing and so taking special efforts is the way to go. Very touching post Indyeah.

  11. R.D.B. permalink
    January 26, 2010 10:08 pm

    Girl Child day !!! how will it help to change the society and it’s believes?!!???
    If you watch indian tele, all the advtmt.s show and mean boy for a child. even news channel have named programs like ‘beta kha lo’!! don’t the daughters need the same kind of nutrition?!!? makes me soo soo sad and sick. Everytime I watch such programmes, I want to protest strongly against this biased mindset. Itz time atleast news channels behave morally and leave their individual prejudices aside.

  12. January 27, 2010 5:37 pm

    I am lucky I was born and was treated equal to my brother and sometimes pampered more than him! In the same way, I want a little Chutki to come in to my life and give her all the happiness she deserves and make every day a “Girl Child day”
    Beautiful post!

  13. April 9, 2010 8:30 am

    Shail, Solilo, Sraboney, Mon, Smitha, Neha, Deeps, HI, Hypermom, Lakshmi, RDB, Rohini
    Thank you so much for your responses.

    @RDB I so agree. The tv advertisements, the textbooks even that are part of our syllabus…all of these lead to even more gender inequality…even more bias towards the girlchild…

    We all have been fortunate that we have grown up in homes that treated us not just as equal to our brothers but sometimes as even more special…

    @HI Thanks. Will do that if we come up with any ideas.

    Most of all I love the fact that all of us here on this space want lil chutkis to be a part of our lives. Some of us already have little chutkis in our lives 🙂 It is so heartening to see.

    May there be chutkis in everyone’s life. And may they get love that surpasses anything they have ever seen.

  14. July 29, 2010 12:37 pm

    Great post!!
    We will never let them put girls in the trash of death
    We will fight for it for sure..

Trackbacks

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