Falling Sex Ratio: Himachal Pradesh among 10 worst states


State health minister Kaul Singh Thakur said that immediate steps are needed to arrest the trend.

Written by Ashwani Sharma | Shimla | Published on:March 26, 2015 10:45 pm

Himachal Pradesh has now been bracketed among the 10 states having the worst sex ratio in the country. The State government shared its concern on the situation, as healthminister Kaul Singh Thakur said that immediate steps are needed to arrest the trend.

According to Thakur, 24 panchayats in Una district, bordering Punjab, has a child sex ratio (0-6) below 500. The overall sex ratio of 875 /1000 in the district, is also lowest in Himachal Pradesh and needs immediate steps to arrest the trend.

Thakur was replying in the state assembly during question hour when Una Congress MLA Kuldeep Kumar and BJP MLA Ravinder Ravi had drawn his attention towards the issue and wanted to know the reasons why Himachal Pradesh was fast slipping into the category of states having lowsex ratio.

Kuldeep Kumar pointed out that two gram panchayats of Una have sex ratio as lowas 111 and 167 respectively. The NationalHuman Rights Commission (NHRC) had already sent notice to the state governmentseeking a report on the subject.

The healthminister confirmed that sex ratio of 24 gram panchayats was very lowand state governmenthas taken notice of it. After NHRC’s notice, the Supreme Court  has also taken cognizance of the alarming situation. The state governmenthas submitted its report informing the NHRC aboutthe steps being taken.

He informed that an owner of an ultra-sound unit has been convicted under PC & PNDT Act. The accused has also been sentenced to one year imprisonment, and slapped a fine of Rs 10,000. Moreover, a state level monitoring committee has been constituted.

However Ravi and former healthminister Rajeev Bindal (BJP) raised their concern on slow implementation of Mother Tracking scheme and lack of interstates co-ordination to address the issue.

Here, Thakur sought cooperation of the elected representative to tackle the problemand advised them not to put pressure on the medicalauthorities to withdraw action against those having non-registered Ultra-sound units. The powers have now been delegated to block medicalofficers to seal and confiscate similar illegal units. There are 260 workingultrasound units including 86 in the State and 174in the private sector.

The minister said that an incentive scheme for the panchayats have been announced to reward those having bestsex ratio and the others, having lowsex ratio, will be punished by denying development grants. Incentive for the familyhaving single girl child or two girls will be raised to Rs 40,000, which could be deposited in the fixed Bank account of the child.

The state governmenthas written to healthauthorities in Punjab to conduct joint raids and inspections as part of a drive to check the illegal ultrasound centeralluring people of Una and other borderdistricts with Punjab.

The state have overall sex ratio of 909 against 1000 female as Una district have 875, Kangra-876, Hamirpur-887, Solan-899, Bilaspur-900, Mandi-916, Shimla-925, Sirmaur-928, Chamba- 953, Kullu-962, Kinnuar-963 and Lahaul Spiti-1033, according to Thakur.

Leader of Opposition Prem Kumar Dhumal suggested to the minister if the public representatives had indulged in unlawful practice and interference with the legal process, the state governmentshould act against them.


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