Feb. 8, 2020

Every year, February 6 is observed as the International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation (FGM).


  • What is it? FGM is the name given to procedures that involve altering or injuring the female genitalia for non-medical or cultural reasons.

  • WHO classifies four types of FGM:
    • Type 1 (partial or total removal of the clitoral glans);

    • Type 2 (partial or total removal of the external and visible parts of the clitoris and the inner folds of the vulva);

    • Type 3 (infibulation, or narrowing of the vaginal opening through the creation of a covering seal),

    • Type 4 (picking, piercing, incising, scraping and cauterising the genital area).

  • The United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) has categorised the reasons into five categories: psycho-sexual reasons ; sociological or cultural reasons; hygiene and aesthetic reasons; religious reasons; and socio-economic factors.

  • As per the World Health Organization (WHO), globally, over 200 million girls alive today have suffered FGM in over 30 countries.

  • In 2018, a study on FGM in India said that the practice was up to 75 per cent across the Bohra Muslim community. The study was conducted by three independent researchers.