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Sex-selection abortion more common among wealthy in India

CWN - August 15, 2011

In India’s struggle to combat sex-selection abortion—a practice that has resulted in a severely skewed ratio of male to female births—a new fact has emerged: the practice of aborting female babies is more widespread in wealthy urban communities than among the rural poor.

India’s urban population is, on the whole, wealthier and more educated than the rural population. Now a National Health Survey has found that the ratio of male to female children under the age of 4 is more even in rural areas.

The survey also found that India has 34,012 registered ultrasound clinics (as well as many more unregistered clinics) where sex- determination tests are performed illegally. The federal government banned the test as part of its campaign to stop sex-selection abortions, but many clinics continue to violate the law, supported by the many thousands of parents who want to know the gender of their unborn children.

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