FPJ POLITICAL BUREAU Mumbai

With the NCP embarking on a full- scale propaganda in support of protection of the girl child, can the Congress lag far behind? In a bid to bolster its girl child campaign, the Congress- led state govern

ment has roped in star Bollywood couple – Kajol and Ajay Devgn – as the brand ambassadors for the state health departments drive.

Ajay and Kajol are believed to have consented to the proposal informally.

With Supriya Sule, NCP supremo Sharad Pawars daughter, leading a padayatra, and Vinayak Mete, another NCP leader, launching a programme for the improvement of the female child, a sort of competition has been triggered within the state on saving the girl child.

And here, the Congress does not want to be seen lagging behind. Earlier the state government had nominated actor- couple, Sachin and Surpiya Pilgaonkar, but minister for public health, Suresh Shetty, who belongs to the Congress, sources said, wanted a Bollywood couple with a girl child and a non- controversial image.

” After detailed discussions, it was decided to approach Ajay and Kajol,” a source said.

NCP seems to be making as much hay as possible out of the skewed sex ratio before the zilla parishad and municipal corporation elections come up in 2012. Maharashtra reserves 50 % of the seats in local and municipal bodies for women.

There has been a sharp decline in the girl- boy ratio in the state during the last decade.

The child sex ratio figures of 1991 Census show 946 girls per 1,000 boys. In 2011, this dropped to 833 girls per 1,000 boys. Beed district in Marathwada region registered a of 93 girls per 1,000 boys in the last decade.

The child sex ratio in Beed was 894 girls per 1,000 boys in 2001 as against 801 girls in 2011.

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