[Svrilist] "Land of Vanishing Girls"

svrilist at mrc.ac.za svrilist at mrc.ac.za
Wed May 17 11:34:39 SAST 2006

Chicago Tribune Examines Sex-Selective Abortion in Indian Village

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The Chicago Tribune on Friday examined sex-selective abortion in Badhochhi
Kalan, a village in the Fatehgarh Sahib district of India's northwestern
Punjab state. The village -- which has the "most skewed sex ratio in the
country" -- is the "land of the vanishing girl," where couples illegally
use ultrasound tests and abort female fetuses, according to the Tribune.
In 2001, there were 754 girls for every 1,000 boys under age 6, the
Tribune reports. The Indian government and aid organizations are working
to make the gender ratio more balanced through education, funding and
enforcement of a law that bans sex-selective abortion (Barker, Chicago
Tribune, 5/12).

India in 1994 approved the Prenatal Determination Act, which bans the use
of technologies such as ultrasounds and sonograms for the purpose of
sex-selective abortion. The law also bans advertisements for prenatal sex
determination, as well as the practice of preconception sex selection. An
Indian court in the northern state of Haryana in March sentenced a doctor
and his technician to two years in prison and fined them about $125 each
for performing a gender determination test in 2001. The physician is the
first person to be sentenced to jail under the sex determination law
(Kaiser Daily Women's Health Policy Report, 3/30).

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