All was well with our world as long as we were close to nature and followed the golden rule of contentment. But greed of modern times seeped into our lives and we became victims of various ills. Times were those when human beings followed the laws of God and nature and touched the pinnacle of moral excellence. But when they revolted against divine law and laws of nature they hit the nadir.
Women, being the weaker sex, and also the fairer, have been at the receiving end of human follies and atrocities most of the time. There was a time when it was being debated whether they have human soul or belong to some lower species.
Fourteen centuries back Islam appeared on the horizon of history and under the guidance of Prophet of Mercy, for the first time, women were given a respectable place in society. They became the equals of men and played roles of respected mothers, beloved wives and dear sisters and daughters. Islam started this divine jihad for restoring the dignified status of woman by successfully imposing a ban on abortion and outlawing of infanticide. Please note that at that time sophisticated modern methods of amniocentesis test or sonography were not available. Islam promoted the view that human life must be protected at all cost. It gave greater importance to women’s life and dignity.
Unfortunately there had been a very low estimate of the status of women in India owing to wrong religious and superstitious beliefs. It is because of this that the British rulers had to resort to legislation to ban sati.
The economic burden attached to marrying off daughters and exorbitant demands of dowry in some sections of Indian society have forced families and even mothers to resort to female foeticide. In Rajasthan there are some villages in which you will not come across even a single girl child. They are systematically being eliminated by foeticide or even strangulation after birth.
In spite of legal ban on sex determination tests there is no dearth of people who make use of them. The overall sex ratio in India has come down to an alarming 927 females to 1000 males. This is a dangerous trend and shows the beastliness of man against his own progeny. If immediate steps are not taken to arrest this inhuman practice, the whole equilibrium of society will be disturbed. The sex ratio has become devastatingly low in Rajasthan, Haryana and Punjab, in both rural and urban areas. Our demography experts and social scientists tell us about 2 to 3 crore missing women who were put to death in the wombs of their mothers during the last two decades.
This is the responsibility of government and all right thinking people to devise means to put an end to this most inhuman practice. We must learn to respect the will of God and listen to His Prophet’s advice that the parents who do not discriminate against girl children are assured of getting Paradise. Radiance is participating in this jihad to protect unborn girls, women, society and whole humanity through publication of this special issue.