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Ultrasound: Grooms go begging for brides, says expert

Written by: Staff
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Hyderabad, Apr 9 (UNI) Grooms have to virtually beg for brides in parts of India as ultrasound used for ante-natal diagnosis of foetal health is being misused to commit intrauterine death leading 100 million girls going missing, Dr Indira Nath, a Member of the Scientific Advisory Committee to the Union Cabinet, warned.

More than 100 million girls were ''missing'' in India in over two decades due to the unintended effect of the ultrasound technology with people using it for gender discrimination, she said in a lecture in memory of noted Scientist K V Rao at the Birla Science Centre.

Expressing concern over Male-female ratio especially in the states of Punjab, Haryana, Daman and Diu, where it was 800 females for 1000 males, Dr Indira said the situation was relatively better in all the southern States.

However, in six villages of Tamil Nadu with population of 13,000, female foeticide was still practised, she noted.

The gender discrimination was practised despite improvement in female literacy rate by 53 per cent and significant economic growth in these states, observed Dr Indira, Founder-Head of the Department of Biotechnology at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi.

Among the religious communities, the ratio was 925:1000 in case of both Hindus and Muslims and 1001:1000 in case of Christians, she said adding that the differential treatment of girls on attaining the age of five years in health care was noted in various states.

Referring to Green Revolution which helped the country attain food security, she said attention was paid to increasing wheat and rice production at the cost of pulses and this led to loss of zinc, magnesium and Iodine from the top soil.

Earlier, iodine deficiency was witnessed only in sub-Himalayan region, but now now it was seen even in the plains and the Deccan region.

UNI SM GM MA GC1315

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