Sex-selection abortions are rampant in India with baby girls as the target. It is estimated that at least 10 million Indian girls have been killed through abortion and infanticide over the last 20 years, seriously skewing demographics in this populous nation.
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh calls it a “national shame.” The Prime Minister estimates that in 1981, there were 962 girls for every 1,000 boys. In 2001, the number dropped to 927 girls for every 1,000 boys.
Now, the government is fighting back to end this illegal practice, increasing penalties for doctors who do sex-selection abortions by permanently striking them off the medical roll, instituting fines of up to $17,500 and putting them in jail for three years. In an effort to influence parents, the Indian government pays poor women to have girl babies.
In a speech, Singh said: “No nation, no society, no community can hold its head high and claim to be part of the civilized world if it condones the practice of discriminating against one half of humanity represented by women.” He described female feticide as “inhuman, uncivilized and reprehensible.”
And to that, we say amen.