Sex ratio: Bathinda lone blot on Punjab’s CV
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While Punjab has gained 19 points in sex ratio with two of its districts, Hoshiarpur and Nawanshahr, having a higher sex ratio than the country's overall mark, the lone blot on this CV is Bathinda - the only district of the 22 in the state to record a decline in sex ratio.
Hoshiarpur has recorded the highest sex ratio of 961 girls/1000 male children with Nawanshahr right behind with 954. Both better the country's overall sex ratio of 943.
At the other end of the spectrum, Bathinda has shown a decline of two points in sex ratio from 870 girls to 868 girls per 1000 male children. Bathinda, interestingly, is represented in the Lok Sabha by MP Harsimrat Kaur Badal, the wife of Punjab Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Badal. She, however, has founded Nanhi Chhaan, a project that aims to put an end to female foeticide and protect the girl child in the state. If the census is an indication, however, more work needs to be done.
As per the recently released Primary Census Abstract (PCA), Punjab has a sex ratio of 895 compared to 876 in 2001, a gain of 19 points. Jalandhar and Rupnagar (915 each), Kapurthala (912) and Tarn Taran (900) also exhibit a sex ratio of 900 or more. All the districts have registered an increase in sex ratio, except Bathinda which recorded a decline of two points from 870 to 868. The increase in sex ratio is the highest in Ludhiana from 824 to 873 (49 points). Incidentally Nawanshahr, once infamous for female foeticide, has recorded the second highest sex ratio and all credit goes to the former deputy commissioner of this district Krishan Kumar.