Indian Fathers Fight Female Infanticide With Selfies
This campaign will make you cry—but for a cause.
Every year in India, thousands of baby girls are abandoned at birth. While some are rescued, most aren’t, leaving the nation with 7.1 million far fewer girls than boys. So earlier this year, Prime Minister Narendra Modi came up with a wholly inventive plan: have fathers across the nation take selfies with their daughters, then share them on the internet for the rest of the nation to see.
Known as #BetiBachaoBetiPadhao (Save the daughter, educate the daughter), Modi hopes he can help slow the epidemic with very simple social media. Tragically, the country’s female infanticide rate is shared by other nations in similar financial conditions. Women in India don’t hold the same economic value as men do: for many, they remain guests in their own family until they can join their husband’s. Some women are still expected to come with a dowry. To prevent bankruptcy, some families turn to infanticide. In 2013, the United Nations came out with a report arguing that India was the most dangerous place to be born a girl in the world.
Still, the country is progressing, change is happening, and #BetiBachaoBetiPadhao is catching fire. Madri’s hope is that these photos can show Indians how valuable it is to have a baby girl. Besides, it’s rare—extremely rare—for selfies to be used for any purpose besides being annoying. Take a look at #selfieswithdaughters below. They’re adorable, they’re heartwarming, and they’re meaningful. Selfies, for social justice.