Photo: Ramesh Pathania/HT
Photo: Ramesh Pathania/HT

Beti Bachao will be implemented in 61 more districts: Maneka Gandhi

The central government's flagship scheme aims at improving the trend of declining child sex ratio in the country

New Delhi: The government will expand the Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao (save the daughter, educate the daughter) scheme to 61 more districts from the current 100, Union women and child development minister Maneka Gandhi said on Monday.

Launched on 22 January 2015 in Haryana’s Panipat district by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the central government’s flagship scheme aims at improving the trend of declining child sex ratio (CSR) in the country and promoting gender equality. As per Census 2011, CSR in India has been declining from 945 in 1991 to 927 to 2001 and 919 in 2011.

“Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao was the idea of the prime minister and it has delivered good results. Girls are now being born and it is a good sign. Now, the government will add 61 more districts in this programme," she said at the All India Regional Editors’ Conference in Jaipur.

The names of the 61 districts were not disclosed.

A year-end review report of the ministry’s schemes had pointed out that more than 50% of the 100 districts had showed signs of improvement after the scheme’s implementation. Haryana chief minister Manohar Lal Khattar said last month that for the first time in a decade, the state’s sex ratio at birth had crossed the 900-mark and improved to 903 in December. The scheme has been implemented in 12 districts of the state.

Gandhi also announced that within two months, all new cell phones will have panic buttons for women in distress. In addition to this, she said that Childline, a toll-free helpline (1098) for children in crisis, has been expanded from 200 to 386 cities and will be further expanded to 500 cities and towns.

PTI contributed to the story