Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi has initiated a scheme, Beti bachao beti padhao (BBBP), which is one among the 11 schemes, designed since 2005 for protecting the girl child.
The BBBP scheme focuses on giving girls a chance to be born, to be loved and to grow. The Ministry of women and child development, Ministries of health and HRD will monitor the scheme. So far, Rs 887 lakh has been released to various states including Haryana, Himachal, Nagaland, Assam, MP, Punjab, Bihar and UP.
In five years, the BBBP targets to improve sex ratio at birth in 100 gender-critical districts by 10 points in a year, reduce gender differentials in under-five child mortality from 59:51 for girls verses boys in 2011 to 55 for girls in 2017 and improve nutrition status of girls, reducing number of underweight and anemic girls under 5.
The child sex ratio has dipped since the 1960s: 945 girls for 1,000 boys in 1991; 927 in 2001 and 918 in 2011 though the problem has rankled India for decades and the government programs have failed to stem the tide.
A multi-sector approach including a toilet in every girl's school in the 100 vulnerable districts, district-level awards to schools strengthening girl child education, state-level innovation funds to encourage best practices in improving child sex ratio and gender inequities.
HRD aims to increase enrolment of girls in secondary education from 76% in 2013-14 to 79% by 2017. The health ministry is tasked with enforcement of laws, especially by strengthening implementation of Pre-Conception and Pre-Natal Diagnostic Techniques (Prohibition of Sex Selection) Act, 1994 to eliminate gender-based sex selection.
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