The Hindu newspaper reports that more than three million baby girls died in India between 2001 and 2011. The statistics are grim, but this “alarming trend” is nothing new– baby girls have been killed at birth or in the first months of life for generations. The number of female deaths is rising along with the rising costs of weddings and the dowry required. Parents of baby girls face a life of poverty. When their daughters reach marriageable age, the family will be required to pay the equivalent of many years’ income to the family of the prospective husband. Women in villages all across the country find it easier and more practical to kill their baby girls. No one in the extended family is happy when the family returns from a clinic or hospital with a baby girl. So the baby quietly disappears or the family reports she died at birth.
Today in the state of Gujarat there are fewer than 800 girls for every 1,000 boys. There aren’t enough young women to enter into marriage which has spiked the number of kidnappings of young women from neighboring countries. As widespread as this problem is, little is being done to stop the practice. In an effort to build awareness and stir government leaders into action the country celebrates International Day of the Girl Child. The picture above says it all: tears of blood and a plea to save the lives of baby girls.
You can help. Go to www.girlbabyhome.com and read about the work of Russal and Kumari Raj. They rescue baby girls and extend their love by making them part of their family. The Girl Baby Home is currently in the process of being licensed by the government to house and care for more baby girls at risk. Read about their struggles at the website.