The United Nations observes 11th October every year as the International Day of the Girl Child, to recognise the rights of girl children and the challenges faced by them across the globe. The theme for International Day Of The Girl Child 2023 is ‘Invest in Girls’ Rights: Our Leadership, Our Well-being.’
“122 million girls are still out of school, which leaves them more exposed to violence, poverty and exploitation,” the United Nations expressed in an ‘X’ post on Wednesday.
While the Government of India has several schemes running to curb practices like female foeticide, female infanticide and empower girl children across the nation like “Beti Bachao Beti Padhao” and “Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana”, schemes for the girl child also exist which are specific to certain states within the country.
On the International Day of the Girl Child, The CSR Journal takes a look into schemes for girl children launched by the states of Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh, Rajasthan, Bihar, Jharkhand, West Bengal and Maharashtra.
Indira Gandhi Balika Suraksha Yojna – Himachal Pradesh
In the first week of October, this year, Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu took to social media to announce that parents of a single girl child will be given an incentive of Rs 2 lakh. This initiative is being taken up by the state government to curb the practice of female foeticide in the state. The incentive under the Indira Gandhi Balika Suraksha Yojna will be increased to Rs 2 lakh from the existing Rs 35,000, the Chief Minister said.
As per the announcement, Rs 2 lakh would be given to parents of single daughter and Rs 1 lakh (increased from the existing Rs 25,000) to those who do not plan to have any further child after two girls.
Mukhyamantri Laadli Yojana – Jharkhand
Jharkhand Government’s Mukhyamantri Laadli Yojana is a scheme aiming to benefit parents of a girl child. Under this scheme, an initial deposit of Rs. 6000 will be made into post office savings account for a fixed tenure of five years. The girl child then receives monetary benefits like Rs. 2,000 after entering 6th standard in school, Rs. 4000 after entering 9th standard in school, Rs. 7,500 after entering 11th standard in school apart from a monthly stipend of Rs. 200. However, the deposited amount will mature only after the recipient turns 21 years.
For being eligible for this scheme, the applicant must be a permanent resident of Jharkhand and should belong to a ‘Below Poverty Line’ family.
Kanyashree Prakalpa – West Bengal
Department of Women Development and Social Welfare, Government of West Bengal has designed the Kanyashree Prakalpa – a conditional cash transfer scheme with the aim of improving the status and well being of the girl child in West Bengal by incentivizing schooling of all teenage girls and delaying their marriages until the age of 18, the legal age of marriage.
The scheme has two components – Annual Scholarship of Rs. 500 and a onetime Grant of Rs. 25,000. The Annual Scholarship is for unmarried girls aged 13-18 years enrolled in classes VIII-XII in government recognised regular or equivalent open school or equivalent vocational/technical training course. The onetime Grant is for girls turned 18 at the time of application, enrolled in government recognised regular or open school/college or pursuing vocational/technical training or sports activity or is an inmate of Home registered under J.J. Act 2000.
Both the benefits under the scheme will be granted to girls who belong to families with annual family income not more than Rs. 1, 20,000. Orphaned and differently abled girls are are also eligible for the scheme.
Mazi Kanya Bhagyashree Scheme – Maharashtra
With an aim to improve the sex ratio in the state, the Government of Maharashtra started the Majhi Kanya Bhagyashree Yojana in April, 2016. Families having one or two daughters are eligible for this scheme.
As part of this scheme, the state government provides Rs 50,000 to parents of single girl child and Rs 25,000 for each daughter to parents of two girls. However, no financial assistance is given for the third girl child.
As per the scheme, the mother will get Rs. 5,000 for the first five years after her daughter’s birth, while Rs. 2,500 will be given per year until she reaches 5th standard, Rs.3000 will be given per year until she enters 12th standard, and after the age of 18 years, she will be provided with Rs.1 lakh per year for higher education.
The scheme is applicable to all permanent residents of Maharashtra state who belong to ‘Below Poverty Line’ family category.
Mukhyamantri Rajshri Yojana – Rajasthan
Launched by the Government of Rajasthan, the Mukhyamantri Rajshri Yojana offers benefits to parents of girl children, starting from their birth till they pursue higher education. The purpose is to encourage birth of daughters, curb female foeticide and empower girl children by ensuring that they complete higher education.
Under this scheme, Rs.2500 is given to the mother at the birth of a girl child. After the child completes one year, with all vaccinations done, her mother gets Rs 2500. Next, Rs.4000 is paid to the girl child at the time of admission in 1st standard of a school. Upon reaching 6th standard, the girl gets Rs.5000 while Rs. 11,000 is paid once the beneficiary takes admission in 11th standard. Finally, Rs 25000 is paid after the girl qualifies class 12 board exams from a government school.
The scheme is only open to all permanent residents of the Rajasthan state. The scheme is applicable to girl children born after 1st June 2016 in a family which is a permanent resident of the state of Rajasthan. The first two installments of Rajshree Yojana will be given to all those girls who are born in a government hospital and a private medical institution registered with Janani Suraksha Yojana.
Further instalments for education can be availed only when the girl child is studying in a state government-run educational institution. If the third child is a daughter, she will be eligible only for the first two instalments of the scheme.
Mukhyamantri Kanya Suraksha Yojana – Bihar
Mukhyamantri Kanya Suraksha Yojana is a scheme launched by the Government of Bihar to benefit the parents of girl children. The scheme has been running since 22nd November 2007. The purpose is to reduce gender-based discrimination and encourage birth of girl child.
Under this scheme, the parents get Rs. 2000 after the birth of a girl child. This amount remains deposited in the bank until the girl turns 18 and interest is paid on the same. However, if the girl dies before completing 18 years, then the amount will transferred to the account of Mahila Vikas Nigam, Bihar.
The scheme is applicable to all permanent residents of Bihar state who are in the ‘Below Poverty Line’ family category. Families having only upto two girl children can avail benefits of this scheme.
Nanda Devi Kanya Dhan Yojana – Uttarakhand
This scheme has been launched by the Government of Uttarakhand to improve female sex ratio and empower girl children. Under the scheme, a fixed deposit of Rs. 1,500 is made in the name of a new born girl child. The principal amount, along with interest is given to the girl child after she attains the age of 18 years and has completed her school education.
The scheme is applicable to all permanent residents of Uttarakhand who belong to ‘Below Poverty Line’ family category. Only two girls from one household can avail the benefit of the scheme.