Aborting of female fetuses is a “national shame” in India.

Despite an increase in education there doesn’t seem to be a change in the practice of aborting a fetus when you find out it is female. There is still “missing” baby girls in India due to the practice. The Indian PM has made a statement against this.
via NYTimes.

Describing the abortion of female fetuses as “inhuman, uncivilized and reprehensible,� he said the government should crack down on the large numbers of doctors who illegally disclosed the sex of the fetus to the parents, and then arranged abortions of unwanted girls.

To put the national spotlight on the fact that this is a problem is a good thing. But I don’t know about this:

Before undergoing an ultrasound test in India, pregnant women must sign a form agreeing not to seek to know the sex of the fetus. Doctors who disclose the sex during an examination can be imprisoned for up to five years. But the law is widely flouted. Studies suggest that doctors often give coded hints, by remarking for example, “Your child will be a fighter,� or by offering pink or blue sweets, as appropriate, on the way out. Successful prosecutions are rare.

I think attempting to moderate this problem at such an interpersonal level is a)impossible, but b) misses the bigger problem. It is not that young mothers are selfish and just want sons. There is societal pressure on women to deliver male born children and if they are not able to they are treated as though something is wrong with them. So to put the pressure on doctors and mothers avoids the bigger question of why there is preference for male children.

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