India: 500,000 take pledge against sex-selection abortion
September 07, 2011
In a dramatic step to reverse an ancient cultural prejudice against female children—which has resulted in an epidemic of sex-selection abortion--officials of a district in northern India have persuaded more than 500,000 people to take a pledge not to discriminate against girls. On September 6, officials of the Karnal district in the northern Haryana state launched their program to reverse a severe imbalance in the region, where there are only 813 young girls for every 1,000 boys. That skewed ratio reflects the widespread occurrence of sex-selection abortion, which has become a major policy concern for Indian leaders. The prejudice against girl child is deeply rooted in India; the 2011 decennial national census revealed that India was “missing” more than 7 million girls under the age of 6.
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