Fishing in troubled waters

861 females for 1000 males, and "ye to ho na hi thaa" ( this was bound to happen) - that guys in Haryana ( and some othe states in India too) have started finding it hard to find suitable girls...

"If you are poor, without job and have small land holding then you get no girls to marry," says Ranu Bai.

But unfortunately, instead of solving the issue some guys are busy exploiting the situation ....

Like other areas where demand outstrips supply, illegal rackets start flourishing, with devastating consequences, as was the case with Sukhdev.....

They showed Gurcharan Singh, Sukhdev's brotherin-law who had come to finalise the marriage on his behalf, the prospective bride, Guddi. She looked too good to be true. Gurcharan immediately agreed to the marriage proposal and paid some token money.

That's when the racket unveiled itself. Kartaro and Charno demanded Rs 35,000.
"They said the girl's family was very poor and needed monetary help to perform the marriage rites," says Ranu Bai.

Sukhdev's family, who earn barely Rs 5,000 a month, could not meet the demand but relatives and other villagers pitched in. "We all gave whatever we could, after all it was the question of Sukhdev's life," says his neighbour Mukhiyaro.

Kartaro and Charno were paid in two installments. The marriage was fixed for May 28 at Dabwali. When the baraat reached the venue, it wore a deserted look. On being confronted, Kartaro and Charno produced Rani, a middle-aged widow with two grown up children. She was not the girl Gurcharan had seen.

Its heartbreaking to see such things happening ! If this business is allowed to flouish, it will only aggrevate the issue !

Meanwhile, the Prime Minister himself is playing politics with the issue . In a recent conference on "Save the gil child", PM hits out at Punjab, Gujarat, Delhi for poor sex ratio ... . Note two things - Punjab and Gujarat are ruled by Congress' opponents. Not only does the PM base his accusations on the census 7 years ago, he quotes confusing figures ( if the above report is to be believed) .

The census figures illustrate that it is some of the richer states of the country where the problem is most acute and these states include Punjab which had only 798 girls (per 1,000 boys), Haryana 819, Delhi 868 and Gujarat 883 girls per 1,000 boys in the 2001 Census.

If this map is to be believed - - J & K , UP , Haryana and Sikkim have a much moe serious issue than Gujarat. quotes Gujarat's sex ratio as 921:1000 . May be the "girl: boy" ratio is different from "female:male" .. even then, the PM conveniently forgets that "In the decade of 1991-2001, the sex ratio of Gujarat has reduced significantly from 934 to 921" ( source: ) . A good chunk of that period was ruled by the Congress at the center and in the state.... Modi took over in 2001

And as per

With Beti Bachao Andolan—a term coined by Chief Minister Narendra Modi—gaining momentum, social mindset is changing in Gujarat, a state which had one of the poorest sex ratios in the country. From 802 in 2001 and 822 in 2002, the sex ratio has climbed to over 870 in 2007 in the state, against a national average of 933.

No doubt the statistics is more confusing than what the PM quoted ( strengthens my feeling that there is a mix up of girl and female sex ratio ) - but one thing is clear.. Modi has initiated steps unlike most other states . In fact in one of his speeches he says ( slightly in a lighter mood) something along the lines of "The situation was so bad that if it continued then 20 in 100 guys will end up like me" , and then he details the step that were taken by his government

Indeed, statistics are many times not perfect, but if the Man Mohan Singh's intention is indeed to use his economics brain power to quote the statistics as he wants and play politics with it, he is proving himself to be no better than the fake bride racket !


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Rohit said…

That's nonsense. Now it amazes me that I am defending Manmohan Singh, but you forced my hands...

a) Dr Singh is arguing there is no correlation between economic prosperity and improved sex ratio. It shouldn't surprise anyone; South Delhi has one of the worst sex ratios in India. That means states like UP are automatically excluded. as they are much less developed than Gujarat and Punjab.

b) Dr Singh is talking about sex ratio among 0-6 year olds which is a predictor of future sex ratio. Naturally, there is a difference between male-female sex ratio and 0-6 sex ratio; they capture different demographics.

c) Incidentally, BJP has been ruling Gujarat since 1990. BJP was in power in Gujarat even before Modi.

d) Modi has taken some important steps to improve the state of girl education; in my opinion the most important factor in stopping female infanticide. I commend him for that.
drisyadrisya said…
a) Either the report or the PM himself puts it in such a way to make look those states are the worst. And that doesn't justify him quoting a 7 year old figure !

b) As per the graph I have linked, if the overall India figures quoted is 927 in 2001 , the corresponding figures that he quoted for the states are wrong... for example he quoted 883 for Gujarat but the graph shows 901-950. where is the consistency ?

c) Check your facts. Congress was in power in Gujarat till 1995. Keshubhai Patel of BJP then ruled till 1996 before Shankarsingh Vaghela (now with Congress) split the party and ruled 1996-97 as "Rashtriya Janata Party" , I believe with Congress support. Some Parikh- again RJP with Congress support - ruled 1997-1998 . 1998 onwards it has been BJP again
Anonymous said…
Its actually 927 in 1991 and 933 in 2001. May be MMS is quoting all figures for 1991, and quoting them ( wantedly or not) as 2001 figures

If the report is correct, then either MMS is deliberately manipulating figures to suit his politics, or he has a memory disorder which anyway would make him unfit to be PM, among other factors of course. Catch-22 for him
Rohit said…

a) It was pretty clear to me what he saying.

b) You are again confusing the issue. The PM is talking about 0-6 years sex ratio; the map you has the overall sex ratio. You are right, however, in one aspect that quoting latest figures may be more useful.

c) Chimanbhai belonged to JD though he was supported by the Congress. Anyway, your point seems to be he is deliberately picking out opposition ruled states; on what you basis do you draw this conclusion? I don't see him blaming BJP and he criticizes Delhi which has been ruled by Congress for 10 years. And Congress has not been in power in UP for close to two decades so he should have no problems blaming UP.
drisyadrisya said…
a) You are free to draw your own conclusion, so am I. Its quite clear to me that he was playing politics.

c)Obviosuly there is no need for him to spell out BJP while talking about Gujarat. And you yourself has commnended the efforts by Modi. If it were such an important conference and if the PM had a grain of sincerity, don't you think he should have ssaid something positive about the efforts ? As per Delhi, he would have added it just to appear balanced.... ( I am not going into speculations of sheila dikshit being not in the good books of sonia) . And for UP, well, Congress always hopes to form an alliance with one of SP ( more likely) of BSP , so why would they want to antagonise them ?
Anonymous said…

What is your problem?
Now you have to give each and every reason of what Dr. Singh do.
The context in which he spoke is right and issue is grave. If steps are taken thats good.
Why you are so protective about Modi?
Rohit said…

a) If it so clear to you, what can I say..:)

b) And you really think SP or BSP care about falling sex ratio in UP that they would be antagonized?

Anyway, thanks for the space. tc
drisyadrisya said…
Anonymouse - Its not just my problem, its a Nation's problem that I have written about.. And you really think some one like Modi who has withstood all the vicious attacks on him by the media needs my protection ?

Definitely not to the extend to which you are protective about yourself, having written the comment as anonymous

b) I am surprised you didn't get the point. They would be antagonized not at the issue itself, but for "their state" being blamed ... Once the alliance with SP is solid, then Congress may go full fledged attacking UP ( as it is being ruled by BSP), but until then.......