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Sex-Selective Abortions in India

Author

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  • Fred Arnold
  • Sunita Kishor
  • T. K. Roy

Abstract

Provisional estimates from the 2001 census of India, which showed unusually high sex ratios for young children, have sparked renewed concern about the growing use of sex-selective abortions to satisfy parental preferences for sons. According to the 1998-99 National Family Health Survey (NFHS-2), in recent years the sex ratio at birth in India has been abnormally high (107-121 males per 100 females) in 16 of India's 26 states. Data from NFHS-2 on abortions, sex ratios at birth, son preference, and the use of ultrasound and amniocentesis during pregnancy present compelling evidence of the extensive use of sex-selective abortions, particularly in Gujarat, Haryana, and Punjab. The authors estimate that in the late 1990s more than 100,000 sex-selective abortions of female fetuses were being performed annually in India. Recent efforts to expand and enforce government regulations against this practice may have some effect, but they are not likely to be completely successful without changes in the societal conditions that foster son preference. Copyright 2002 by The Population Council, Inc..

Suggested Citation

  • Fred Arnold & Sunita Kishor & T. K. Roy, 2002. "Sex-Selective Abortions in India," Population and Development Review, The Population Council, Inc., vol. 28(4), pages 759-785.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:popdev:v:28:y:2002:i:4:p:759-785
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    Cited by:

    1. Rohini Pande & Nan Astone, 2007. "Explaining son preference in rural India: the independent role of structural versus individual factors," Population Research and Policy Review, Springer;Southern Demographic Association (SDA), pages 1-29.
    2. Abay Asfaw & Francesca Lamanna & Stephan Klasen, 2010. "Gender gap in parents' financing strategy for hospitalization of their children: evidence from India," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 19(3), pages 265-279.
    3. Sundaram, Aparna & Vanneman, Reeve, 2008. "Gender Differentials in Literacy in India: The Intriguing Relationship with Women's Labor Force Participation," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 36(1), pages 128-143, January.
    4. Prabir C. Bhattacharya, 2012. "Gender Inequality and the Sex Ratio in Three Emerging Economies," Heriot-Watt University Economics Discussion Papers 1201, Department of Economics, School of Management and Languages, Heriot Watt University.
    5. Tarun Jain, 2014. "Where There Is a Will: Fertility Behavior and Sex Bias in Large Families," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, pages 393-423.
    6. Tin-chi Lin & Alícia Adserà, 2013. "Son Preference and Children’s Housework: The Case of India," Population Research and Policy Review, Springer;Southern Demographic Association (SDA), pages 553-584.
    7. Lefebvre, Pierre, 2006. "Discrimination sexuelle dans les dépenses des ménages : survol de la littérature et évidences empiriques pour le Canada," L'Actualité Economique, Société Canadienne de Science Economique, vol. 82(1), pages 119-153, mars-juin.
    8. repec:eee:cysrev:v:79:y:2017:i:c:p:263-273 is not listed on IDEAS
    9. repec:eee:deveco:v:127:y:2017:i:c:p:269-282 is not listed on IDEAS
    10. Seema Jayachandran & Ilyana Kuziemko, 2011. "Why Do Mothers Breastfeed Girls Less than Boys? Evidence and Implications for Child Health in India," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, pages 1485-1538.
    11. TENIKUE Michel & TEQUAME Miron, 2017. "Birth order, Sex Composition and Risky Behaviour of Adolescent Girls in Nigeria," LISER Working Paper Series 2017-04, LISER.
    12. Chaudhuri, Sanjukta, 2013. "A Life Course Model of Human Rights Realization, Female Empowerment, and Gender Inequality in India," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 52(C), pages 55-70.
    13. Nandi, Arindam & Deolalikar, Anil B., 2013. "Does a legal ban on sex-selective abortions improve child sex ratios? Evidence from a policy change in India," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, pages 216-228.
    14. Choi, Jin Young & Lee, Sang-Hyop, 2006. "Does prenatal care increase access to child immunization? Gender bias among children in India," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, pages 107-117.
    15. repec:eee:jeborg:v:144:y:2017:i:c:p:40-61 is not listed on IDEAS
    16. Bhattacharya, Prabir C, 2012. "Gender Inequality and the Sex Ratio in Three Emerging Economies," SIRE Discussion Papers 2012-31, Scottish Institute for Research in Economics (SIRE).
    17. Prabir C. Bhattacharya & Vibhor Saxena, 2015. "Socio-Economic Determinants of Child and Juvenile Sex Ratios in India: A Longitudinal Analysis with District-Level Data," Heriot-Watt University Economics Discussion Papers 1503, Department of Economics, School of Management and Languages, Heriot Watt University.
    18. Tasnim Khan & Rana Ejaz Ali Khan & Muhammad Ali Raza, 2015. "Gender Analysis of Malnutrition: A Case Study of School-Going Children in Bahawalpur," Asian Development Policy Review, Asian Economic and Social Society, pages 29-48.
    19. Tom Vogl, 2012. "Marriage Institutions and Sibling Competition: Evidence from South Asia," NBER Working Papers 18319, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    20. Tarun Jain, 2014. "Where There Is a Will: Fertility Behavior and Sex Bias in Large Families," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, pages 393-423.
    21. Kalsi, Priti, 2017. "Seeing is believing- can increasing the number of female leaders reduce sex selection in rural India?," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, pages 1-18.
    22. Lebrun, Bernard, 2009. "Auctions with almost homogeneous bidders," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, pages 1341-1351.
    23. Pulver, Ariel & Ramraj, Chantel & Ray, Joel G. & O'Campo, Patricia & Urquia, Marcelo L., 2016. "A scoping review of female disadvantage in health care use among very young children of immigrant families," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, pages 50-60.
    24. Yong Yoon, 2006. "Gender Imbalance: The Male/Female Sex Ratio Determination," Journal of Bioeconomics, Springer, pages 253-268.

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