Female-foeticide a stigma on society: Hema Malini

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Chandigarh, Feb 2: Actor-politician Hema Malini today came out strongly against the prevalence of female foeticide, particularly in Punjab and Haryana, and exhorted womenfolk to realise ''their own worth to bring an end to the abhorrent practice.'' Herself a proud mother of two daughters, Hema Malini, interacting with the mediapersons here, described the practice as a stigma on the society and stressed the need for strict implementation of laws against this heinous crime.

Daughters must be provided proper upbringing and opportunities to end the gender-bias in the society, she said adding ''I never felt the need for a son as both my daughters, Ahana and Esha, have made me proud by their achievments.'' ''I am ready to give full support to any organisation in campaign against the female foeticide as long as the efforts were genuine and not just lip-service,'' said the actress.

Responding to a query about her joining politics she said she had never given it a thought till fellow actor Vinod Khanna persuaded her to campaign for him in Gurdaspur Parliamentary polls.

''As I received a good response and established a very good rapport with the masses as a campaigner, other BJP leaders also roped me in for their poll rallies. Later, the party asked me to join it, as my mother, late Jaya Chakrawarty, also urged me on, I accepted the offer to become a Rajya Sabha MP from the BJP, '' Hema Malini said.

Hema Malini, also a noted classical danseuse, who performed Durga Ballet during the inaugration of the Chandigarh Film Festival yesterday, said, ''I am grateful to a God that he has gifted me with both the talent of dancing and acting. As a dancer I get opportunity to travel to different parts of the world and interact with people.'' Lauding the efforts of Chandigarh Administration in organising the film festival, she said the city has a lot of potential for tourism and events like this would further help developing the city into a major tourist hub.

''Even my husband, Dharmendraji, is keen to set up a studio here as the region has a lot of potential'', she added.

UNI

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