In Tiring, a tiny tribal-dominated village in Jharkhand, all houses will now have nameplates that bear the names of unmarried girls and their mothers residing there.
This unique method of identifying households by the names of the girl children and their mothers has been put in place to address the skewed sex ratio and female literacy rate in the village, and motivate girls to get educated.
According to the 2011 Census, the sex ratio in this East Singhbhum district village that is located 26 km from Jamshedpur, was 786 female births to 1000 male births. The female literacy rate was only 50.6%. The village has 170 families.
“The village will become the first one in Jharkhand, which will be identified by the identity of the girl child rather than head of the family,” said Sanjay Kumar, District Public Relations Officer, to Times of India. The local panchayat pradhan and villagers have agreed to support the cause.
Under the National Food Security Act of 2013, it is already mandatory to list the senior most female household member as the head of household in order to avail of benefits under the public distribution system. The earlier practice was to list a male as head of household.
“We launched this initiative ‘my daughter my identity’ in line with with Prime Minister’s mission ‘Beti Bachao Beti Padhao’ from this village, as it has a very low literacy rate and sex ratio. We have got this proposal duly approved by the gram sabha,” said Sanjay Pandey, Deputy Collector, to Hindustan Times. Nameplates have already been put up in several homes, he added.
“The nameplates are in yellow – symbolising light of hope and energy – while the names of the girl child and mother are in sky blue colour – symbolising the blue horizon. All the 61 households with unmarried girls will have houses named after the daughters and mothers,” Pandey said.