Corona Virus might have changed the way we live our lives during the lockdown, however, this lockdown has not stopped Centre for Social Research from continuing its work with the community members from other parts of the country. Our team has been relentlessly working towards strategizing alternative ways to continue to maximize our outreach to the community members in need.
Previously, under our BetiBachaoBetiPadhao program in five gender critical districts of Haryana, we have conducted numerous activities in the field level with community members, ASHA, Anganwadi workers, District Appropriate Authorities, Doctors, Schools and Students. In the past, we have carried outactivities including rallies, Expert Group Meetings, Youth Mobilizations, Street Plays and so on. The lockdown did put a pause on our “in-person” outreach, but it surely did not stop us from interacting with individuals on the digital space. Starting from connecting with individual via telephone calls to conducting our first ever “Virtual NGO Chaupal” with existing and new NGO partners from Haryana.
The NGO chaupal got all of us together on one platform to collate suggestions put forward by all local NGOs to structure our way forward post COVID-19 in terms of curbing sex selective activities and continuing relief mechanism for people in distress. Keeping in mind the current situation, our team is all geared up to carry on with such activities on the online space in the near future. Hence, stay tuned for more updates!
Pre-natal sex selections, the sex selective abortions, are harmful practice that reflects fundamental inequalities in the perceived social and economic value of women and girl children. This problem is especially pronounced in areas of Northern India, where patriarchal norms are deeply entrenched. In the target state of Haryana the child sex ratio in the state fell drastically from 964 in 2001 to 834 in 2011 (Census 2011). The child sex ratios in the targeted districts are particularly low:
As a mark of recognition to CSR’s contribution in raising the sex ratio in the districts that it worked, when in January 2015, the Government of India launched ‘BetiBachao, BetiPadhao’ (BBBP), a watershed program to address the problem of sex-selection on a large scale, CSR has been chosen by the Women and Child Development (WCD) Minister Smt. Maneka Gandhi, as the nodal agency to implement BBBP in five skewed sex ratio districts of Haryana namely Ambala, Kurukshetra, Gurgaon, Jhajjar&Mahendragarh. CSR’s recommendations were incorporated in the implementation of BBBP program.
Following our continuous implementation and rigorous intervention in the five gender critical districts, there was a noteworthy change in the Child Sex Ratios in the districts.
The program takes a multi-pronged strategy to build capacity to address the practice of sex-selection at the village, district and state level.
MULTI PRONGED APPROACH OF CSR
We engaged in numerous activities for an effective implementation of BetiBachaoBetiPadhao-
- Rapport building with the District Authorities: The project has established a connection with the district level authorities in all the five districts where the project have been implemented. The implementation strategy has received appreciation from each of the district authorities
- ChetnaMandalies/ Community Watch Groups (CWGs) and Committees Against Sex Selection (CASS):we reconstituted and built capacity of ChetnaMandalies[Community Watch Groups (CWGs) and Committees Against Sex Selection (CASS)]. These groups/ committees help us to periodical monitor the communities identified with low Child Sex Ratio by both the WCD and health department of the districts.These groups are set up for capacity building and raising awareness regarding gender bias sex selection and right to education for the girl child. So far, CSR has established 50 Community Watch Groups (CWGs) in low sex ratio villages of each of the 5 districts during 2015-19.
CWG ESTABLISHED IN 2018-19:
- Youth Mobilization with Educational Institutions in Mahendragarh and Gurugram:based CSR model of best practices we conduct mobilization of educational institutions and work with youth teams in awareness generation against gender biased sex selection at schools and colleges. So far, we have organized two youth Mobilizations; one at along with other cultural activities at Swami Vivekananda Senior Secondary School, Mehrampur, Mahendragarh, where the students participated in skit play competition and poster debate competition. The second one was at the Women’s Day Celebration planned by NorthCap University in Gurugram.
- ChetnaYatras/Public Rallies against sex selection: Team CSR commenced with the Public Rallies in collaboration with the members of WCD ministries and local NGOs of Mahendragarhdistricts. Everyone enthusiastically participated in the chanting various slogans promoting gender equality and the menace of sex selective abortions- core essence of BBBP.
- Panchayati Raj Institution (PRI) Training: We have conducted trainings in all the five districts; at the PRI training we work closely with the elected representatives of villages with low Child Sex Ratio. Through the PRI training we aim inform them about the importance of setting up of Gudda/Guddi board at the Chaupal or central area of the village and not inside an anganwadicentre. At these meeting, we also spread awareness regarding the Pre-Conception and Pre-Natal Diagnostic Techniques (PC/PNDT) and Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act.
- Expert Group Meeting:The team worked with the PC/PNDT nodal officers, Senior Medical Officers, Medical Officers of the district of Mahendragarh and Jhajjar to conduct the Expert Group Meeting to ensure the effective monitoring and evaluation of implementation of the law. The meeting assists us in understanding the number of cases registered, the rate of acquittal and conviction in the district under the PC/PNDT act. In addition, on the request of the doctors, we also organized for a session on the Sexual Harassment at Workplace ([email protected] 2013) Act. The Expert Group will be formed in each of the five districts.
- Advocacy for government engagement at the village and DistrictLevel: Through regular interaction with the stakeholders including District Program Officers, Cluster Development Program Officer, Anganwadi workers and AshaBahus, we were capable to ensure systematic monitoring of the PC-PNDT Activities and awareness generation regarding the financial incentive schemes, institutional birthing, encouraging higher education for girl children etc.
- NGO Chaupal:at the conclusion of the program, we will have a roundtable discussion with the networking organization. In the last phase of BBBP, CSR collaborated with 17 local NGO partners.
News Coverage 2019: