Female Foeticide: A burning issue
Thursday, 07 June 2012 05:39
Written by Zeba Mehdi, Yusuf Mehdi
With the nationwide telecast of the reality show Satyamev Jayate’s first episode related to female foeticide, the changes are expected to come. The harsh realities shown in the episode stirred the people. Aamir Khan was seen literally crying.
Satyamev Jayate is one memorable attempt made by Aamir khan to expose and kill the inhumane tendencies in us. Normally, most of us tend to look at the outside reality with indifference or from a very pessimistic perspective towards the incidents happening around. When we attempt to throw a new light on the world around, first we have to peep within ourselves. The killers are among us, in us.
The episodic serial aims at bringing into light the prevailing criminal activities, taking place in the society. Every episode raises an issue and awares the people of the hidden barbarism in the society.
Female foeticide witnesses a saga of broken hearts, promises, and deprivation of the women. Considered one of the major concerns, this practice is the result of degenerating society. After 1980, new developed ultra-sound machines enabled the people to confirm the foetus of a baby in womb. The Amniocentesis and ultra-sonography tests were originally invented for the detection of congenital abnormalities of the foetus, but now-a-days they are mis-used for knowing the sex of the foetus with the intention of aborting a female fetus. It has come into notice that sex-determination tests are widely done even in the rural areas also. As most of the deliveries in rural areas are done at home, there is not any record of the exact number of births/deaths. In the old days, female infanticide was in practice. In modern times, female foeticide has replaced female infanticide. But the fact remains the fact that females have always been denied birth since the very beginning of society.
Who is responsible?
When all the religions treat abortion as immortal, then where these atheists are coming from. Abortions due to some complications are permissible, but aborting a child on the grounds of inferior sex is highly condemned.
Indian history has witnessed many religious riots and controversies. People of different castes and creeds don’t think alike. But the practice of female foeticide transcends all casts, religions, and communities.
The numbers of abortions arise out of society’s son preference or its brutal behaviour with the woman, who has not produced a son. Moreover, unwanted girls have to face an organized parallel ill-treatment at their natal homes. They are neglected in the family and made captive. One of my acquaintances in J.P. Nagar blows prayers on a glass of water and asks pregnant ladies to drink that water. She does so to enable the ladies to produce boys. It generally happens that oldies rely on their practice of blowing air at the mouths of pregnant ladies. Despite of all the efforts of blowing air at a pregnant lady, when she did not produce a boy, she was looked down upon and her husband did not talk to her for two years. Is it not a mental torture that an innocent lady has to face? Why we don’t accept what has been awarded to us whether in the form of a Luxmi or Dev?
The growing demand for boys has shown a marked shrinking of conscience. We, the parents, should have a broader outlook. We, ourselves, give opportunity to the doctors to flourish their business. It’s our individual and collective responsibility to bring forth the changes in the society.
No doubt, the society favours males. The existing system deteriorates the social harmony and balance. The sufferers are the females. In the first episode of Satyamev Jayate, Amisha Yagnik of Ahmedabad had to abort her six female unborn children in eight years. Whereas Praveen Khan, of Morena, was a survival of her husband’s brutal activity. Mitu Khurana, a Delhi-based doctor was ordered by her orthopedic surgeon husband and in-laws to abort her girl twins. These are only three-four cases, but facts are tremendously shocking.
According to 2011 census, the killing rate of unborn female children is 10, 00,000 a year. The situation worsens more. Haryana has got 808 girls, Maharashtra 908, Himachal 904 girls to 1000 boys. Rest of the states follows the same. Only Meghalaya has higher sex ratio of 972 girls to 1000 boys. Kerela outnumbers all states where 1058 women are there to 1000 men. The national average is 933 girls to 1000 boys.
India has quietly been into the horrors of female foeticide. The govt. of India actively enforces laws and punishments, but the sinners keep on accelerating the practice. In the opinion of Dr. Safder Mehdi (Prof. at King Saudi Uni. Riyadh), who conducted a survey of the Indians in Arab, revealed the Indian psyche. He comments, “After talking to the Indians here, I realize that they have generated a spirit of self-denigration. Their quest for boys is their necessity to get help from them in future. Girls are married off and boys earn for them. This is a firm belief. ”
Throughout human history woman has been adorned, respected, loved and worshipped. Then why this psychological transformation is going on. Why to force them to produce a son when it’s not in her hands. Aamir Khan has rightly stated, “The sex of the unborn child depends on the chromosome of the father and our God.”
All know that foeticide is punishable under section 315 of penal code with imprisonment of 5-10 years or fine, or with both, considering the seriousness of the case. But still our never ending craving drives us to the haphazard consequences. I recall a few poetic lines from Robert Frost’s The Road not taken:
I shall be telling this with a sign
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I…
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.
This is what Aamir Khan doing to inspire people to give their contribution in the upliftment of the women and to eradicate the practice of female feticide. Our positive contribution can lead to our mental satisfaction.
We should come forward and condemn this practice. We don’t have to repent in our old age, but should be proud of ourselves. We have to build the nation. One Aamir Khan has stood up for us, what we are waiting for. Let’s join hands with him and put an end to all evil practices.