The Hindu: The gap between stated intent and ground reality

The Save Girl Child initiative also promises to protect girl children from sexual abuse and improving girl child education.

In January this year, Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched the ambitious Beti Bachao Beti Padhao (Save Girl Child) initiative from Panipat, Haryana, promising to address the issue of declining sex ratio. India has seen a steep decline in child sex ratio in the last decade, from 927 (girls per thousand boys in the 0-6 age-group) earlier to 918. But Budget 2015-16 shows a decrease of about Rs. 3,900 crore in allocations for the National Health Mission that has a crucial role in ensuring the health and survival of women and children, the stated BBBP goals.

These and several other contradictory tendencies between stated intent and action on the ground by the NDA government that turns a year old this month have been documented in a citizens’ report put together by the civil society group ‘Wada Na Todo Abhiyan’ slated for formal release on Sunday.

The Save Girl Child initiative also promises to protect girl children from sexual abuse and improving girl child education. Yet, the NDA government has made no effort to make appointments in nodal government agencies such as the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights, which monitors the implementation of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act and the Right to Education Act, the report notes.

The BJP’s election manifesto spoke of bringing about an economic revival through strengthening the traditional employment bases of agriculture and allied industries. But the budget allocated by the Central government for agriculture is less than 2 per cent of the GDP, which is grossly insufficient to meet farmer’s needs, the report notes.

“Attempts by the Central government to balance this out with the increased rate of compensation for crop losses due accruing to natural disaster can by no means be treated as an important decision,” the report notes.

Source: The gap between stated intent and ground reality