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No girl born in 16 villages in six months in Uttarkashi

Uttarkashi: Not a single girl was born in 16 villages here in the last six months, with authorities suspecting that health facilities were conducting illegal sex determination tests and abortions, following which the Uttarakhand chief minister ordered a probe into the issue.

Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat termed the data shocking.

“Officials have been asked to find out the truth. It goes against our Beti Bachao Beti Padhao campaign,” he said, ordering a probe into the issue.

State Women and Child Welfare Minister Rekha Arya said the matter was serious and an investigation was underway to find out what led to such a situation.

Uttarkashi District Magistrate Ashish Chauhan said data revealed that in the 16 villages of Bhatwari, Dunda and Chinyalisaur blocks not a single girl was born in the last six months.

A total of 65 children were born there during the period out of which none was a girl, he said.

The number of girls born in 66 other villages of the district has also been extremely low in comparison to boys, he added.

These 82 villages have been categorised in the ‘Red Zone’.

The district magistrate said a team of district-level officials has been set up to conduct a survey of these villages and find out whether illegal sex determination tests and abortions are being carried out secretly by the health facilities in the area.

The Health Department has been asked to examine the months when pregnant women registered on the reproductive and child health portal and to check the profile of families, he said.

The teams have been asked to submit their report in one week, the district magistrate said.

However, Chauhan said, the overall gender ratio in the district has improved with 439 girls being born out of a total of 935 deliveries.

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