In 2006 you organized the Beti Bachao Maha Laddu program in Surat. It has become a history. Could you please throw light on how you organized it?

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            Gender imbalance gave rise to a number of problems that were likely to disturb social order and social harmony. To get rid of this gender imbalance it was mandatory to prevent female foeticide and to cultivate an attitude of equality to boys and girls. The solution of this serious problem demanded the awakening of the common man. We clubbed the Water Conservation project with the ‘Save the Daughter’ campaign. Our Water Conservation project was hugely successful all over Gujarat. Lakhs of workers were actively involved in keeping the project alive. We prepared a historical plan to launch and spread the Beti Bachao campaign all over the country. We decided to spread it to every nook and corner of the nation and to take it to each and every common man of the nation. The success of a campaign depends on the people’s emotional involvement with the campaign. We called this campaign ‘Beti Bachao Maha Laddu’ program. The program was organized under the banner of Patidar Samaj. Thelaunch date of the program was 1st January 2006. We started its preparation 8 months before its launch. 35000 volunteers joined in this mission. Forms were filled up by 252000 families. The details to be supplied in the form were as under:

  • How many female children are there in the family?
  • How many male children are there in the family?

            Other details of the family were also to be supplied in the form. Workers and volunteers involved in this huge project collected a handful of food and a little water from each and every family. From this collected food and water a very big laddu of 15000 MAN (20 kgs) was prepared. This laddu was 35 feet high and its area was 65 * 65 feet. It was as huge as a mountain. It was given the name Beti Bachao Maha Laddu. This laddu was taken note of in Limca book of records. While collecting food and water from each and every family, the volunteers said to each and every family, “A Beti Bachao Maha Laddu will be prepared from this food and water.” The location of this program was at Kamrej, 20 kms away from Surat. People attended this program in amazingly large numbers. The volume of traffic was so huge that it became literally impossible to drive any vehicle on the 200 feet wide Surat – Kamrej road. People who wanted to attend the program were compelled to walk a long distance of 20 kms. They did walk 20 kms to attend the program. More than 12 lakh people attended the program. Seven stages were prepared, each being big enough to accommodate 200 people. More than 1400 leading persons from all over the state, the nation and the world remained present. More than 50000 leading persons came from other villages and cities. In this grand and glorious program Beti Bachao Maha Laddu was worshipped with AARTI. 12 lakh men and women took an oath in front of this Maha Laddu prepared from the food collected from each and every family. They took the oath ‘We are taking an oath in front of this Maha Laddu that we will never let female foeticide take place in our family; we will cultivate an attitude of equality to both boys and girls and we will prevent others from committing the sin of female foeticide.’

            All leading persons gave proper, adequate guidance to lakhs of people. PRASAD was placed in 35 lakh boxes and these boxes were distributed in all the cities and villages of Gujarat. All the people took an oath in front of this PRASAD-‘We will never commit the sin of female foeticide.’ This was for the first time in the whole world that such a huge historical program was organized in order to put a full stop to female foeticide. Large numbers of people joined in this program. All of them felt an emotional closeness or oneness with the program as food and water were collected from each and every family. Everyone felt ‘This is my program.’

            This program was truly successful in spreading awareness about curbing the evil practice of female foeticide. The program aimed at putting a full stop to the evil custom of the abortion of female fetuses and it received wide media coverage. SANTS and MAHANTAS started advising against female foeticide and appealing to eradicate the evil custom of female foeticide. The Government also took steps to stop female foeticide and made laws against this evil practice. Doctors involved in this unpardonable act of female foeticide were punished.