It was an immensely proud moment for Bibipur in Haryana when the village got special mention in Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Mann Ki Baat on Sunday for its innovative ‘Beti Bachao, Selfie Banao’ contest.
“It is heart warming that a small initiative taken by us at the village was noticed by the Prime Minister,” said Sunil Jaglan, the sarpanch whose idea went viral after a report in The Indian Express about the initiative. He said it was a matter of pride for the village and him that the Prime Minister would take the initiative forward.
In his Mann Ki Baat address on Sunday, Modi asked “fathers” across the country to click selfies with their daughters. The selfies with taglines that strengthen the “Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao” campaign would be retweeted by the PM.
The panchayat of Bibipur village in Jind district had announced a contest on June 9 wherein fathers were asked to click selfies with their daughters and send these to the sarpanch through WhatsApp. The panchayat received 794 images, not only from several districts in Haryana, but also from Gujarat, Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh. More than 150 entries were received from Delhi.
Feeling proud after the PM’s addresses, Jaglan said: “It will give a boost to the work that we are undertaking at our level.”
“When I thought about the contest,” said Jaglan, “there were some who told me it was a very small initiative and will not make a difference. After what the PM said the entire nation has been involved.”
There are several initiatives taken in the past by Bibipur panchyat. Among the first was holding a khap mahapanchayat in 2012 where women were given a chance to speak on the issue of female foeticide. A resolution was passed that murder charges be slapped against any parent involved in termination of the foetus.