News round-up Feb 29, 2008
1. I've never been a fan of Priety Zinta post her writing-for-BBC-debacle where she mentioned that being a film star in India is the toughest job there is ... but more power to her for being the only woman celeb in Indian Bolly-world to be speaking up for rights of disadvantaged women of India.
Bollywood actress Preity Zinta had met Finance Minister P Chidambaram a few days before he presented the 2008-09 Budget, and had urged him to keep the budget woman-friendly.
"We met for just about 20 minutes and I, along with some other women like Renuka Chowdhary and some NGOs with a voice, got a chance to have a say. It was to urge him to make this year's budget woman-friendly, to provide incentives for women in the industries," Preity said.
Now on to the meaty stuff, the Baddies:
1. APPALLING piece of news. Indo-Canadian parents (should we call them parents?) file lawsuits when fetal DNA gender test gives incorrect results. Incorrect results as in told them that the fetus is male whilst it was a female. Poor them. Burdened with a girl child. In a first world country where opportunities for girls for a successful life are just as many as boys. How tragic for them parents eh? Shame! Shame that these people who don't even deserve to be parents get to reproduce and ruin yet another female life. What self-esteem is that poor girl going to grow up with when she is going to find out that her father gaped when she was born because he was expecting a son? Sad. Sobering. Downright shameful. Makes me miserable knowing that I am a part of the same culture as these 'parents' who indulge in gender tests only to kill female fetuses.
2. My views on desensitization of the process of sex-selective abortions by articles like the one mentioned above (#1 of baddies) are echoed by William Saletan when he writes:
The article exists because the underlying stigma has already decayed. Scores of women are suing over erroneous sex tests. The Jains are unashamed to tell their story and put their names on it. So are the other women quoted in the article. As technology makes it possible to break the sex-selection taboo privately and inexpensively, the practice spreads, and we get used to it. The question of whether to restrict it becomes, as with other prenatal tests, a mere question of consumer protection. Eventually, we'll establish rules to ensure the safety and efficacy of fetal sex tests. At that point, we'll declare them adequately regulated. That's how a taboo begins to die.
3. Bollywood actress arrested for rape and murder:
According to the police, the 12-year-old girl, whose name they did not disclose, was engaged as a helping hand in the actress' residence at Bhayendar neighboring Thane. The police alleged that few days ago Huma Khan and her male acquaintance took the girl to Pune, where the accomplice raped the victim.
An opinion: Gender inequality in society spurs rape