Panipat: Expressing her concern over dwindling sex ratio, President Pratibha Patil said that a nation without girls is incomplete, adding that female foeticide is a heinous crime and every person should come forward to eradicate this social evil and ensure equal status for women in all spheres of life.

Addressing an international symposium on ‘Women and Child Empowerment’ to mark the 175th birth anniversary of poet Maulana Khawaja Altaf Hussain Hali, the President stressed on literacy, better health services, education, nutritious food for mother and infant and self employment as prime sources of women empowerment.

Patil said. “It’s for the first time after the independence that in the age group of 0-6, there are only 914 girls per 1,000 boys.” She praised Haryana state government for taking up initiatives to improve the sex ratio in last few years.

Urging people to uproot the social evils related to women prevalent in society she said, “Significant efforts have been made in this direction but still a lot has to be done. Efforts can be done on the rural level to start with.”

State Governor Jagannath Pahadia lauded the initiatives of the state government for the empowerment of women in all fields.

Haryana Chief Minister Bhupendera Hooda talking about the government’s ‘Ladli Yojna’ informed about the distribution of Rs 195 crore amongst 86 families where a second girl was born.

JPN/Bureau