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International Women’s Day: Remembering the girls denied the right to life

Summary

  • Over 60 million women in India missing in the past decade
  • #VanishingGirls campaign continues to educate women about their rights

NEW DELHI (8 March 2019) – Are women treated equally to men? 8 March marks International Women’s Day which is celebrated across the world. Nevertheless, in many countries women are still seen as less valuable than men. The practice of sex-selective abortion acts as an indicator of this and is a persistent threat to girls’ lives. For example, India has lost over 60 million women in the past decade due to the wide spread use of this practice. There are 21 million girls unwanted by their family in the country today, according to the 2018 Economic Survey issued by the Indian government.

“In our country, 50,000 babies are aborted every month for one reason: they are girls instead of boys,” said Tehmina Arora, Director of ADF India. “India’s skewed sex ratio shows that, as a nation, we have failed girls. They are either aborted or, once born, subject to various forms of violence. It’s time to address this issue, especially on International Women’s Day. Every child is precious. Both women and men have an equal right to life and liberty. Our nation cannot afford to lose its little girls to discrimination and neglect. India’s future is interlinked with the lives of the women and girls of the country. Whoever believes that women share the same rights as men cannot turn a blind eye to what is happening in India today.”

In our country, 50,000 babies are aborted every month for one reason: they are girls instead of boys-It’s time to address this issue, especially on International Women’s Day. Every child is precious. Both women & men have an equal right to life & liberty.

Making women aware of their rights through #VanishingGirls

The #VanishingGirls campaign is an initiative of ADF India launched in 2016 which advocates for the right to life. It particularly focuses on the practice of sex-selective abortion in India.

In addition to raising awareness about sex-selective abortion, ADF India’s #VanishingGirls campaign also advocates for a correct implementation of the Pre-Conception Pre-Natal Diagnostics Techniques Act that India adopted in 1994. The law is an important instrument in the fight against sex-selective abortion and could help bring a gradual change to Indian society, in which women and girls are still heavily discriminated against. Implementation of the act, however, has been poor and sporadic in most parts of the country.

“International Women’s Day serves as a reminder that, tragically, countless girls in India are killed before birth simply because they are girls. Sex-selective abortion has had a profound impact on Indian society as seen through the status of women in Indian society,” said Paul Coleman, Executive Director of ADF International.

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