Our site administrator Paul tips us off to an article over at the BBC today that highlights a unique new program launched by the government of India:
The Indian government is planning to set up a network of cradles around the country where parents can leave unwanted baby girls.
The minister for women and child development, Renuka Chowdhury, told BBC News the cradles would be “everywhere”.
It is the latest initiative to try to wipe out the practice of female foeticide and female infanticide. [Link]
In my opinion anything that will help mitigate the foeticide and infanticide scourge is a good thing, but the imagery of little cradles set up around the country is kind of bittersweet.
“We will have cradles strategically placed all over the place so that people who don’t want their babies can leave them there,” Ms Chowdhury told the BBC News website.
The cradles could be in places as diverse as the local tax collector’s office, or where local councils meet.
Ms Chowdhury said parents would be able to leave their babies secretly. The important thing was to save their lives…
“They will be collected and put into homes,” she said. “There are plenty of existing homes and we will be adding some more also…” [Link]
Apparently there is actually a precedent for this type of program (in Japan):
The drop-off at Jikei Hospital in southern Japan will consist of a small window in an outside wall, which opens on to an incubator bed, officials say.
Once a baby has been placed inside, an alarm bell will alert staff. [Link]