The shocking state of female foeticide in India

  • Jan 19 , 2017

Female feticide is the process of abortion to terminate female foetus from the womb of a mother before birth after the sex determination tests like ultrasound scan. Female foeticide and even any sex determination test are illegal in India. It is the shame for the parents who are desperate for a baby boy as well as doctors carrying out abortions especially for this.

Female foeticide is practiced in India from the time of technological advancements in the medical field like prenatal sex determination in the 1990s. However, earlier to this, female children were killing after their birth in many regions of the country. In the Indian society, a female child is considered as a social and economic burden to their parents so according to them, it is better to kill them before birth. Because of this, the sex ratio in has been reduced to a great extent -- eight males per one female. It is not easy to compensate the sex ratio even if we stop female feticide completely in the next few years.

Some of the reasons for female foeticide are:

  • The important reason of female foeticide is the preference of a male child over a girl because a son is the main source of income however girls are consumers. There is a misconception in the society that boys always look after their parents, however, girls don’t.
  • The old custom of dowry system in India has put a big challenge before parents which is the main reason to avoid girl child by the parents.
  • The low status of women in the male-dominated Indian society.
  • Parents consider that boys would carry their name ahead in the society however girls are only to handle households.
  • Legalisation of abortion in India is another big reason for illegal sex determination and termination of a girl baby.
  • Technological advancement in the health sector has given fire to the female foeticide.

    Photo Courtesy: International Business Times

    However, this can be curbed by practicing the following points:
    • There should be strong ethical code for doctors.
    • Everyone should be in favour of the removal of sex discrimination and away from the traditional teachings against girls in the society.
    • Women should be empowered to deal with discriminatory practices in the society like dowry system, etc.
    • There should be immediate complaint registration system for all women.
    • Female foeticide awareness program should be run to aware the common public.
    • Assessment of the status of women, like, female mortality, sex ratio, literacy and economic participation should be done on a regular interval of time.