New 10-year India census: Sex ratio “worst in recorded history”

From Eurasia Review, April 14, come the “grim” results of the 2011 census. I’ve excerpted the lowlights.

Notice the push for population control – lowered family size – has only worsened the plight of women. Also note that greater wealth and education surprisingly add their demise. Also note  sex trafficking, “bridetrafficking,” and sex crimes against women increase as their numbers decrease.

Finally, note national and regional security is threatened by the imbalance of girls to boys, creating a more “volatile” (higher testosteroned) society. Not mentioned is extra men are well-suited to join or be drafted into country’s armed forces. Countries with normal female/male balances can not possibly compete.

India’s already skewed infant sex ratio is getting worse. India counted only 914 girls aged six and under for every 1,000 boys….  This sex ratio is the worst in the recorded history of the modern Indian.

According to 1991 census, the 0-6 sex ratio was 934 girls to 1,000 boys, which decline to 927 as per 2001 census. Nature provides that slightly more boys are born than girls: the normal sex ratio for children aged 0-6 is about 952 girls per 1,000 boys….

A cultural preference for sons and the increasing availability of prenatal screening to determine a baby’s sex have helped contribute to a worsening in the ratio, which has been deteriorating rapidly….

And such imbalances are not confined to India. Last year the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences warned that by 2020 one in five young Chinese men would be unable to find a bride because of the dearth of young women….

More worrying, places that used not to discriminate in favour of sons… have begun to do so. Economic success seems to spread son preference to places that were once more neutral….

Indeed, as the average family size drops in India, the preference for sons only intensifies. It is sons who inherit land, pass on the family name, financially provide for parents in old age and perform rituals for deceased parents.

Daughters, on the other hand, will cost the family dearly at the time of their marriage, with a dowry at times costing as much as a family makes in a year….

As a result, it becomes tantamount to having a serious birth defect in the minds of Indian parents, with genuine sentiment for their daughters giving way to a stifling economic calculus….

In the area dubbed the “Bermuda Triangle for girls” in India, some districts register only 774 little girls for every 1,000 boys….

The impact on Indian society is grim. One might have thought that scarcity would lead to girls being valued more highly, but this is not happening….

If we compare the number of girls actually born to the number that would have been born had a normal sex ratio prevailed, then 600,000 Indian girls go missing every year. This is less distorted than the sex ratio in China….

The states with the worst sex ratios… are among the richest, which suggests distorted sex selection will not be corrected just by wealth or government policy….

Parents choose to abort female fetuses not because they do not want or love their daughters, but because they feel they must have sons (usually for social reasons); they also want smaller families – and something has to give. Ultrasound technology ensures that this something is a generation of unborn daughters….. Sex selection therefore tends to increase with education and income: wealthier, better educated people are more likely to want fewer children and can more easily afford the scans- disastrous for the nation.

The “missing girls” are usually aborted, shortly after the parents learn of their sex….

A skewed sex ratio may instead be making the lot of women worse. Robbery, rape and bridetrafficking tend to increase in any society with large groups of young single men. And men in higher-up social ladder find wives more easily than those of lower-down, the social problems of bachelorhood tend to accumulate like silt among the poorest people and the lowest castes. This is unjust as well as damaging. Moreover, there are reports of unknown numbers of girls who are drugged, beaten and sometimes killed by traffickers…. The poor are forced into a long or permanent bachelorhood…. Poor bachelors are often victims of violent crime.

Many Western countries portrayed India as Asia’s great hope, and India’s growth as a global power will counter balance China’s rise and ensure that rise remains peaceful. Indeed, the U.S. has identified India as a crucial partner for the coming century…. Washington has even pledged to help India develop its nuclear energy capabilities. But the continued disappearance of India’s women and girls is putting the future of India’s security partnership with the West at risk.

Even in March 2010; U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton stated that “the subjugation of women is a direct threat to the security of the United States.” In fact, the security of states is closely linked to the security of women. If Clinton is right, then shouldn’t India’s dismal female-to-male ratio raise a red flag for American foreign policy?

The daughter deficit will create a society that is much less stable and much more volatile than it would be with a more balanced ratio. The sustainability of peace and stability – for India and the region – will be progressively undermined in lockstep with the devaluation of India’s daughters.

[Top photo via]

12 thoughts on “New 10-year India census: Sex ratio “worst in recorded history””

  1. Even in March 2010; U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton stated that “the subjugation of women is a direct threat to the security of the United States.”

    What was that, Mrs. Clinton, about safe, legal, and rare?  Excuse me, you need to speak up, because I’m sure I didn’t hear you correctly.


  2. It is not voluntary contraception and lower family size that harms or kills women and girls, including girls in the womb. It is *misogyny.* Voluntary family planning and not having to bear a child every nine months no matter what are *blessings* to the female gender.


  3. @Marysia

    I’m confused. If misogyny is the reason why females are killed en utero, does this mean that all those feminists who like to claim that it’s misogynistic to not allow a woman to obtain abortion are actually proponents of misogyny themselves? If so, then there are a few people I’d like for you to talk to.


  4. Natural family planning is a harmless way that a couple can avoid or enhance conception.  The problem here is misogyny and you’re right, it’s a girl-on-girl crime.  First of all, abortion advocates push only for death and do nothing to counteract misogyny.  Then, they encourage it by promoting abortion as some kind of ‘treatment’ for domestic abuse and unwanted children.
    A nation of parents and a generation or two of feminists have put Indian women in this position.  But I’m sure some abortion fan will read this and conclude, ‘oh, well, as long as its voluntary infanticide and feticide, let’s not dare put any restrictions on abortion or face the underlying problems of devaluing women.’   It’s girl on girl crime in terms of mothers against daughters, and it’s father against child crime as well.  Abortion needs to stop, like yesterday.


  5. When 10% of men in society have no hope of a wife of their own, rape, slavery, and sex-trafficking skyrocket. So even if a woman is lucky enough to be born in countries like India and China, they face a whole new set of perils. Then there is the matter of all those young men without the settling and civilizing influence of wives and marriage. This leads to generally increased societal violence and national military adventurism.

    Derivative evils that ripple out from the evil of abortion.


  6. Devalueing of the female stems from hatred of life. Females create life in their bodies and nurture it after birth. Females are stereotyped as the nurturing sex. Males are stereotyped as war like, life destroyers, and rapists. While this latter stereotype is grossly unfair to many males who are decent human beings, and not all women are good and nurturing, the stereotypes still remain in the back of most people’s consciousness. A society that hates the female is revealing its cultural values to be anti-life, anti-nurturing, and probably pro-abuse, if not actively pro-death.
    Of course such a society will not allow a scarcity of women to work to women’s advantage.  You’d think that the chavinist, mysogenist males would get the short end of the stick, as women flock to marry gentle, kind men who value them.  But Satan (the author of mysogeny) will find a way to use the shortage of women to punish them further for being female.  Thus you get trafficking and forced prostitution as a “solution” to the shortage of females. 
    Nothing but a complete overhaul of Indian society is going to fix this problem. This will happen when Jesus rules in Jerusalem and Satan is bound in the bottomless pit for 1000 years. 


  7. As a result, it becomes tantamount to having a serious birth defect in the minds of Indian parents, with genuine sentiment for their daughters giving way to a stifling economic calculus.

    What a sad and terrible statement. I didn’t care or know what gender my baby was when I was pregnant, I just wanted a strong, healthy baby, and that’s what I got.  I heard that not only are female infants aborted, they are often victims of infanticide — women put poisonous substances on their nipples so when the babies nurse they are slowly poisoned, and I’ve even heard of them being buried alive.  It’s just absolutely heartbreaking.


  8. Marysia,

    What stops the man and woman from practicing family planning?   Abortion is a very convenient and legal means by which to retain the second class, second choice status quo of women in India. I thought it was supposed to be so liberating for women.

    The gods do indeed punish humans by giving us what we ask for.


  9. I gAve birth to five girls and one son. I must say, if I had to abort all my girLs I do belieVe my uterus wouldn’t have made it To the boy.
    I’m all about woman doiNg what tHey Want to do with their bodies. Abortions should not be Used as a form of birth contol. It physicaly harmful and not To metion the psychological ramificAtiONS.
    Just my opiniOn, I don’t expect anyone to agree with me.


  10. Exactly what the Population Controllers want. Just one way to control population by killing off female.


  11. This most certainly stems from sheer misogyny, and the deeper reasons go far beyond economics.  Societies used to be matriarchal, valuing the fact that it is women who bring forth life. When they became patriarchal, they became focused on degrading the life-giving powers that women have, and making it seem as though bringing life into this world is for men’s purpose.  Thus, the focus on boys.  It isn’t that women have great powers, but women are here to perpetuate life for men.  Yeah, right.  It is really just womb envy.  If we couldn’t focus on the gender of the child, then we might just be forced to merely honor the act, and honor the women because she is bringing forth a new human being.  You see it to some extent still here in the U.S. when a woman is pregnant and her husband is macho and focused on it being a boy.  It isn’t so much about the boy but jealousy and trying to turn the attention on to him because he can’t do something as great.  If you take away economic factors, the reality is many of these Indian mothers I’m sure would prefer girls.  I know that sex selection here in the US actually favors girls, people going through microsort choose to have female babies 75% of the time.  And now studies in Japan show a stronger preference for girls, studies show that over 75% of parents would choose having a daughter if they could only have one child.  Studies are showing similar now too for South Korea.  Is it a good thing if it goes the other way in preference for daughters?  Of course not, but the people of India need to wake up to their blatant misogyny.  Last time I checked, it is the woman giving birth to these children. If anyone has a right to have an opinion about the gender it is HER, not her husband or her mother-in-law, etc.  These women apparently need some help with self-esteem, and the system needs to change to where girls are not an “economic burden.”


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