Pan India Expansion of ‘Beti Bachao Beti Padhao’ Scheme
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TOPIC: General Studies 2:
- Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation
- Welfare schemes for vulnerable sections of the population by the Centre and States and the performance of these schemes; mechanisms, laws, institutions and Bodies constituted for the protection and betterment of these vulnerable sections
- Issues relating to development and management of Social Sector/Services relating to Health, Education, Human Resources
Beti Bachao Beti Padhao (BBBPS)
BBBPS is a centrally sponsored scheme that provides 100% financial assistance to state governments to encourage girl child education.
In News: Expansion of Beti Bachao Beti Padhao for a pan India reach, covering all the 640 districts (as per census 2011) of the country to have a deeper positive impact on Child Sex Ratio, based on the successful implementation in 161 districts.
The latest reports as per HMIS data of MoHFW for 161 BBBP districts indicate that for the time period between April-March, 2015-16 & 2016-17, an improving trend in Sex Ratio at Birth (SRB) is visible in 104 districts, 119 districts have reported progress in first trimester registration against the reported Anti Natal Care registrations and 146 districts have reported improvement in institutional deliveries.
- Improving the sex ratio at birth (SRB) in gender critical districts by ten points in a year and preventing gender biased sex selective elimination through an awareness campaign as well as multi-sectoral interventions, which include registration of pregnancies in first trimester, increased institutional deliveries, and prohibition of sex-determination
- Ensuring survival and protection of the girl child
- Ensuring education and participation of the girl child (increasing girls’ enrolment in secondary schools and achieving 100% re-enrolment of girls who had dropped out)
Against Sex Determination
The Pre-Conception and Pre-Natal Diagnostic Techniques (Prohibition of Sex Selection) Act, 2003, commonly called PC-PNDT Act, makes it illegal to determine the sex of the unborn child or even use sex-selection technologies. There is a clear need for states to effectively implement the Pre-Conception and Pre-Natal Diagnostic Techniques (PCPNDT) Act, 1994 and take appropriate measures to promote the value of the girl child. With governments’ political will there is at least a start of crackdown on such cases.
We need continuous, sustained efforts to change social norms and attitudes that ensure preference for the male child and turn a blind eye to discrimination and sex-selective practices.
While the government is on the right track, we need continuous monitoring and an independent review of the scheme for future course correction. Lack of policy implementation, diversion of funds and the failure of monitoring mechanisms are some of the reasons that can contribute towards the failure of the BBBPS.
To achieve the objectives of the scheme, the government must ensure stricter enforcement of the policy guidelines and improve the monitoring mechanisms it employs.
Note: SRB is the number of girls born for every 1000 boys and it is a more direct indicator of the prevalence of gender-based sex selection than Child Sex Ratio which also includes factors such as post-birth mortality.
Connecting the Dots:
- “Investing in women’s lives is an investment in sustainable development”. In the light of the given statement, examine the importance of the ‘Beti Bachao Beti Padhao’ scheme.