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The Govt. of India has recently announced Palna – the cradle baby scheme for girl child. Under the proposed scheme, the Government plans to open a centre in each district where parents can leave their girl children if they do not want to bring them up themselves. The state will then raise the child.

Jayalalitha the former chief minister had already introduced this in Tamil Nadu years ago, but its nice to see entire India covered now. The government is stressing on the girl child as they find statistics to show that female infants are the one’s abandoned the most.

It is pure ignorance, selfishness and to a lesser extent illiteracy causing this. China too has a similar problem and I suspect because of their censored media, not much is heard of female infanticide/foeticide and abandonment. Girls in Tamil Nadu, compared to most other states of India, are better educated and score more marks than boys in high school and college exams. Go to any industrial town in the state, Tirupur, Coimbatore, Chennai etc., and you will find women workers far outnumbering the men. There are more women engineers and graduates in the state and the IT and Call Centre industry reflects that.

Female emancipation has brought in its own set of problems, especially for men, but I would rather have my daughter emancipated than lead a life subservient to men in her life. I propose laws should be made stricter so that any man or woman found guilty of abandoning their infant girl should be forcibly castrated or sterilized so that they are no longer capable to repeat such callous behaviour.

More details of the Palna scheme can be found at this official press release.


This is an amazing book I read on my flight and wait at the airports on my return from Milan to Chennai. William Dalrymple has described Delhi and its history beautifully. This book means much to me. The longest period (5 years) I stayed anywhere in my nomadic life is in Delhi. However, this is a must read for anyone interested in the British Raj, the Mughals, the history of Delhi or to just read a good book. Though the book is classified as a travelogue, his writing style is simple, filled with humour and much better than reading a novel. I learnt much about Delhi and its history after reading this book.

I now wish to read his other books, The Age of Kali, White Mughals and his latest The Last Mughal.

City of Djinns I highly recommend.

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