When her crystal ball started humming and spinning today, Verum didn’t notice at first. She was preoccupied with a task that made her feel warm on the inside. She was putting up a photo frame of the Gifted Four in the dorm room!  Verum loved this picture – everyone was grinning so widely!

But her crystal ball hummed louder and soon, Verum had to turn towards it. She said, “It’s time for world-gazing!”

‘Hmm, this is excellent news today,” murmured Verum, “According to the latest findings of the National Family and Health Survey-5 (NFHS), the number of women in India has surpassed the number of men. The data showed that the number of girl children living after birth has also improved. This is the first time it has happened!”

“Wow, that is fascinating!” said Scorch, “Tell us more please!”

“The Union Health Ministry released this NFSH-5 data which shows that there are 1,020 women for every 1,000 men. This survey happened in 11 states and three Union Territories (UT). It is said to be a massive achievement for India,” said Verum, “The Indian society places more value on boy children over girl children. This happens to the extent that many couples don’t want girl children. This leads to fewer women per 1,000 men.”

“To tackle this problem, Prime Minister Narendra Modi told people to not eliminate their daughters after coming to power in 2014,” said Verum, “His government also launched a scheme called ‘Beti Bachao Beti Padhao’ in 2015. The campaign helped create awareness about this issue. However, there are also reports stating that this program did not create the required impact in India. There are states where families continue to prefer boys over girls, leading to girls receiving fewer opportunities.”

“Has anything at all changed?” said Scorch.

“Well, at least the numbers indicate that there has been some change in the society,” replied Verum, “The NFHS surveyed 630,000 households out of 300 million households. So, for more expansive data, we would have to wait till the census. A census is a process through which the government collects data to see the population trends in the country.”

“Keep us updated, Verum!” said Orak.