The Ministry of Women and Child Development has proposed insurance cover for each girl child to provide incentives for the upbringing of girls. Under the scheme, an insurance cover of one lakh rupees will be provided for the girl child as a safety net and also to enable the girl to receive a lump sum at the age of 18 years.
Briefing the Members of the Parliamentary Consultative Committee about the various welfare measures taken up by the Government for the welfare of Girl child, Minister of State for Women and Child Development, Smt. Renuka Chowdhury said that Ministry had also proposed Conditional Cash Transfer Scheme during the 11th Plan. Under the scheme, cash transfer would be provided to the family of the girl child, preferably to the mother on fulfilling certain conditionalities such as birth registration of the girl child, immunization, enrollment to school, retention in school and delaying the marriage age beyond 18 years. This will be in addition to the various incentives, which already exists for girl child given by the Centre and the States.
Expressing concern over the falling sex ratio of girls in some of the States due to female foeticide, Smt Renuka Chowdhury said that the Ministry was working on a multi-dimensional strategy which include preventive, advocacy and programmatic measures. She stressed the need of setting up of monitoring and inspection committee at District Level by the States for stringent implementation of PNDT Act. Female foeticide should be treated as a crime and not just a social evil, therefore, stringent punishment and punitive action is required. The Ministry has taken up the matter of including gender sensitization and right of child for the inclusion of school curriculum for creating positive mindset from very beginning in this regard, she added.
The Minister also urged the Members of Parliament to help to create awareness, sensitization and education of various social groups in rural and urban areas against the female foeticide.
Participating in the discussion, Members of Parliament said that Panchayats should be involved for creating mass awareness about the issue of female foeticide at the grassroot level. Suitable incentive schemes should be chalked out to reward Panchayats for doing outstanding job in this area and more opportunities should be provided to girl child.