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Sinclairs High School >> Educate the Girl Child Initiative

educate the girl child initiative

Educating a Girl Child is educating an entire family.  Like a great man once said "give me good mothers and I will give you a great nation.  Bangalore City Mission joins in the Government efforts to promote education of Girl Children. With special school and college sponsorships for girl children to pursue their education.

EDUCATING GIRL CHILD FOR PROTECTION AND PROMOTION OF HUMAN RIGHTS OF WOMEN IN INDIA

 

                                                                       Dr. Amita Agarwal

                                                                           Head

Department of Political Science

Government S. K. College

Sikar, Rajasthan

 

 

From Jesus to Gandhi, before and after, every sublime soul has beheld divinity in juvenility. Every child comes with a message that God is yet not discouraged of his finest creation human being. Every child (specially the girl child, as she is the one who keeps the cycle of human life going on) is a special and priceless gift that we are bestowed upon with the hope that we would recognize its preciousness, respect its individuality and enable it to fulfil its abundant potential. A child, male or female has the first call upon the resources of the state as it is the future of entire human kind and advancement of the human race depends on its development.

 

The hallmark of culture and advancement of civilization consists in the fulfillment of our obligation to young generation by opening up all opportunities for every child, without any type of deprivement or discretion to enfold his or her personality and rise to his or her fall stature, physically, morally, mentally and spiritually.

 

Yet, with the March of human kind this glorious gift has suffered culpable neglect and callous cruelty for a very long time despite protests by humanists, thinkers and sages in every country. When this precious gift is not valued and respected and more often than naught is refused to be accepted (female feticide and infanticide) then are we proclaiming that we are not worthy of receiving this invaluable gift? Or are we suggesting that the earth is no more fit for human life? Or that we are no move hopeful of our future and do not wish human life to exist any more? Do we want that human life should be wiped away from the face of the earth for all times because if we don't accept a girl child how can we expect to keep the cycle of human life going on?

 

Survival and development of girl child for which educating her is essential is not only the question of her survival only, it is the question of survival of the entire human race and should be looked upon as such. Moreover, when girl child will be properly educated, her mental faculties adequately developed than only in her later life she will be able to realize her true self, contribute to the development of her children, family, society and nation simultaneously maintaining her dignity and true worth by standing up for and demanding her own human rights, their protection and promotion in all fields of activity.

 

Human Rights of Women: Theory v/s reality

Ours is a deeply perplexing age in relation to rights, on the one hand there is a virtual explosion of human rights enunciations and on the others there is a growing disregard of rights and cynicism about over future. The proliferation of human rights instruments seems to have caused critics of human rights to form a right weariness and a right wariness. Thus we are in a situation where there is a notable increase in affirmations as well as violations of human rights, wherein all struggles articulate themselves in the language of human rights and invoke the 'Politics of rights" making human rights into bargaining points for the enhancement of power. Human rights of children and those of a girl child have also become victims of this power game. The only viable long lasting way to protect human rights of children is through educating them and that too with a big emphasis on the education of girl child which should supersede education of male child as a girl educated is a family educated, a family educated is a society educated, a society educated is a nation educated and if all nations are thus educated than in the whole wide word no one will remain uneducated.

 

Education enlightens and an enlightened women only can stand up for protection of her human rights and for those of her fellow sisters who may be being deprived and discriminated against due to various religious and socio-economic factors. By educating girl child we set in a process of empowering women, who will be able not only to defend their rights and live with dignity but also to contribute to the development of entire society.

 

Here the questions arise as to why a girl child is discriminated against and deprived? The root cause of this practice lies in various socio-cultural, economic and religious factors, which make us ignore the rights of girl child and our duty towards them with open eyes.

 

Preference of Sons over Daughters1

Discrimination against girl child is the direct outcome of son preference. Three major factors contribute to this preference.

 

First, The continued belief is the economic utility of sons as family labor, wage earners as well as support for parents during old age. Dowry also serves as an economic incentive to have sons just as it serves as a disincentive to have daughters.

 

Second, Socio-cultural factors like patrilineal descent and inheritance as well as other aspects of kinship building serve to create conditions that sustain female disadvantage and inequality.

 

Third, Within religion sons have been accorded the unique privilege of performing various rites and rituals, including the last rites for deceased parents. All these factors create a higher premium on having sons.

 

Though religious and socio-cultural factors tip the balance in favour of boys especially in traditional societies, it is also true that no society has liberated itself economically, politically or socially without a sound base of educated women. Many country experiences around the world have demonstrated that investment in educating women is the most precious investment a society can no make. Still, the gender gaps in education, i.e., the difference between the enrollment ratio of boys and girls and literacy ratio of men and women, exist in all the regions of the developing world. This becomes evident from following data of South Asia as a region and India as an individual country.

 

India: Sex Ratio: 1901-20012

 

Census Year

Sex Ratio
(Females per 1,000 males)

1901

972

1911

964

1921

955

1931

950

1941

945

1951

946

1961

941

1971

930

1981

934

1991

927

2001

933

 

Source: Provisional Population Totals, Paper - 1 of 2001, Series - 1, Census of India 2001. 

Notes: 

  1. For 1991, the interpolated figures for Jammu and Kashmir have been used.
  2. While working out the sex ratio for India for the year 2001, the estimated population of entire Kuchch district, Morvi, Maliya-Miyana and Wankaner talukas of Rajkot district, Jodiya taluka of Jamnagar district of Gujarat and entire Kinnaur district of Himachal Pradesh have been used as the population enumeration of Census of India, 2001 could not be conducted in these areas due to natural calamities.

 

India: Literacy Rate: 1951-20013

 

Census Year

Persons

Males

Females

1951

18.33

27.16

8.86

1961

28.30

40.40

15.35

1971

34.45

45.96

21.97

1981

43.57

56.38

29.76

1991

52.21

64.13

39.29

2001

65.38

75.85

54.16

 

Source: Provisional Population Totals, Paper - of 2001, Series - 1, Census of India, 2001.

Notes:

  1. Literacy rates for 1951, 1961 and 1971 Census relate to population aged five years and above. The rates for the 1981, 1991 and 2001 Census relate to the population aged seven years and above.

 

South Asia's share of female illiteracy twice the share of female population4

 

State of Female Education in South Asia5

 

 

India

Pakistan

Bangladesh

Nepal

Sri Lanka

Bhutan

Maldives

South Asia

Primary enrolment ratio (net) 1995

Girls

76

25

78

46

100

47

100

69

Boys

98

36

89

80

100

58

100

88

Secondary enrolment ratio (gross) (1993)

Girls

38

13

12

23

78

n/a

49

33

Boys

59

28

26

46

71

n/a

49

52

Literacy rate (%) (1995)

Female

38

24

26

14

87

28

93

36

Male

66

50

49

41

93

56

93

62

Drop Out  rate (%) (1991)

Girls

39

52

54

48

7

27

2

42

Boys

35

52

56

48

6

26

12

39