Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao Scheme

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    Recently ,Committee on Empowerment of Women  tabled its fifth report on “Empowerment of women through education with special reference to Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao Scheme’’ in Lok Sabha.

    Key Higlights of the report 

    • According to the report, nearly 80 per cent of the funds for the scheme has been used for its advertising and not on sectoral interventions such as in health and education for women.
    •  Te total budgetary allocation under the scheme was Rs 848 crore, excluding the Covid-stricken financial year of 2020-21 since its inception in 2014-15 till 2019-20.
      • During this period, an amount of Rs 622.48 crore was released to the states.
    • However, only 25.13% of the funds, i.e. Rs 156.46 crore, has been spent by the states, reflecting not up to the mark performance of the scheme.
    • It was observed that out of a total of Rs 446.72 crore released during 2016- 2019, “a whopping 78.91% was spent only on media advocacy”.
    • Recommendations :The committee understands the necessity to undertake a media campaign to spread the message of Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao among the people.
      • The government should focus on planned expenditure allocation for sectoral interventions in education and health.
      • The government should  reconsider spending on advertisements under the BBBP scheme and should focus on planned expenditure allocation for sectoral interventions in education and health.
      • The committee has recommended the WCD ministry must immediately take up the issue with states/UTs and ensure proper utilisation of BBBP funds for the benefit of the girl child.

    About

    • Need and Background of the scheme :
      • The Census (2011) data showed a significant declining trend in the Child Sex Ratio (CSR), calculated as a number of girls for every 1000 boys between the age group of 0-6 years, with an all-time low of 918 in 2011 from 976 in 1961. 
        • The decline in CSR has been unabated since 1961
      • This is an alarming indicator of women disempowerment which reflects both pre-birth discriminations manifested through gender-biased sex selection and post-birth discrimination against girls. 
      • The decline is widespread across the country and has expanded to rural as well as tribal areas.
      • Alarmed by the sharp decline, the Government of India has introduced the BBBP programme to address the issue of decline in CSR in 100 gender critical districts. 
    • Beti Bachao Beti Padhao 
    • It is a flagship scheme of the Government of India, launched by the Hon’ble Prime Minister on 22nd January 2015 in Haryana to arrest the declining Child Sex Ratio and related issues of empowerment of Women over a lifecycle continuum. 
    • It’s a convergent initiative of Ministries of Women and Child Development, Health and Family Welfare and Human Resource Development.
    • It is implemented by states with 100% central assistance. 
    • Under, BBBP scheme there is no provision of direct benefit transfer.
    • Objectives 
      • The Overall Goal of the BBBP Scheme is to Celebrate the Girl Child & Enable her Education. 
      • Other objectives are as under:-
        • Prevent gender-biased sex selective elimination
        • Ensure survival & protection of the girl child
        • Ensure education of the girl child
    • Components: It has two major components.
      • Mass Communication Campaign on Beti Bachao Beti Padhao
        • It aims at ensuring girls are born, nurtured and educated without discrimination to become empowered citizens of this country. 
        • The Campaign interlinks National, State and District level interventions with community-level action in 100 districts, bringing together different stakeholders for accelerated impact.
    • Multi-Sectoral interventions in 100 Gender Critical Districts covering all States/UTs:-
      • Coordinated & convergent efforts are undertaken in close coordination with MoHFW and MoHRD to ensure the survival, protection and education of the girl child. 
      • Multi-sectoral interventions include:
        • Ministry of WCD: Promote registration of pregnancies in the first trimester in Anganwadi Centres (AWCs); Undertake training of stakeholders; Community mobilization &  sensitization; Involvement of gender champions; Reward & recognition of institutions & frontline workers.
        • Ministry of Health & Family Welfare: Monitor implementation of Pre-Conception and Pre-Natal Diagnostic Techniques (PCP&DT) Act, 1994; Increased institutional deliveries; Registration of births; Strengthening PNDT Cells; Setting up Monitoring Committees
    • The Ministry of Human Resource Development(Ministry of Education : Universal enrolment of girls; Decreased drop-out rate; Girl Child-friendly standards in schools; Strict implementation of Right to Education (RTE); Construction of Functional Toilets for girls.
    • Achievements
      •  The scheme has resulted in increased awareness and sensitization of the masses regarding the prevalence of gender bias and the role of the community in eradicating it.
      • Progress in terms of monitorable targets:
        • Sex Ratio at Birth: Promising trends of improvement in Sex Ratio at Birth (SRB) have been observed at the National level. SRB has improved by 16 points from 918 (2014-15) to 934 (2019-20), as per the HMIS data of MoH&FW.
    • Health: Percentage of 1st Trimester ANC Registration has shown an improving trend from 61% in 2014-15 to 71% in 2019-20 ( As per HMIS, MoH&FW).
      • The percentage of Institutional Deliveries has shown an improving trend from 87% in 2014-15 to 94% in 2019-20 ( As per HMIS, MoH&FW).
    • Education: Gross Enrolment Ratio of girls in the schools at the secondary level has improved from 77.45 (2014-15) to 81.32 (2018-19-provisional figures) as per UDISE-data. 
    • Attitudinal change: The BBBP scheme has been able to bring the focus on the important issue of female infanticide, lack of education amongst girls and deprivation of their rights on a life cycle continuum. The scheme has successfully engaged with the Community to defy the age-old biases against the girl child and introduce innovative practices to celebrate the girl child.
    • Challenges 
      • The lack of policy implementation, diversion of funds and the failure of monitoring mechanisms 
    • Underutilisation of funds
    • Infrequent task force meetings
    • Non-compliance to guidelines
    • Way Forward 
      • Increase planned expenditure allocation for education and health related interventions.
      • District level task forces should be headed by local female frontline workers
      • Ensure that on-ground implementation personnel are adequately trained in community outreach activities
      • Necessitate greater use of mobile technology for monitoring and documentation

    Source: IE