Submitted By:Raj Deep Kumar
Gautam Priya Maurya
B.Tech CSE 1st Year
Selective Abortion and
How You Can Help?
The devaluation of women and social domination of men still
continues to prevail in India. Women are usually viewed as dowry
burdens, the weaker gender, and worthy of a lower social status
compared to men. This has led to social and economic problems.
One of the main concerns is that the declining sex ratio, which was
brought to attention in 2001, as the sex ratio hit as low as 927 to
1000 men. Other issues can include abuse of women's human rights
and unequal opportunities given in education, employments or the
rights to be born.
The key factor driving gender inequality is the preference for boys.
This is because boys are deemed to be more useful than girls. Boys
are given the exclusive rights to inherit the family name and
properties and they are viewed as additional status for their family.
Not only that, they are also believed to have a higher economic
utility as they can provide additional labour in agriculture. Another
factor is that of religious practices, which can only be performed by
males for their parents' afterlife. All these factors make sons more
attractive. Moreover, expensive dowry of daughters further
discourages parents from having daughters. Thus, a combination of
factors has shaped the imbalanced view of sexes.
Discrimination against female children has been a topic of debate. It
has been a subject of concern and sociological significance. This
subject raises the cultural aspects about the role of a female child in
society, what her human rights are as a human being and a number
of sensitive issues. This issue is important because there is nearly
universal consensus on the need for gender equality. Gender based
discrimination against female children is pervasive across the world.
It is seen in all the strata of society and manifests in various forms.
As per the literature, the female child has been treated inferior to
male child, and this is deeply engraved in her mind. Some argue
that due to this inferior treatment, the females fail to understand
their rights. This is more predominant in India as well as other
lesser developed countries.
Sex selection before birth and neglect of the female child after birth,
in childhood and, during the [teenage] years, has resulted in males
outnumbering females in India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, and South
Korea. In North America and Europe the sex ratio of the population
is 105 women per 100 men; in India, China and South Korea, the
ratio is 94 women per 100 men. Women have a biological advantage
over men for longevity and survival; however, in spite of this there
are more men than women.
The Thomas Reuters Foundation survey says that India is the fourth
most dangerous place in the world for women to live in. women
belonging to any class, caste or creed and religion can be victims of
acid throwing, a cruel form of violence and disfigurement, a
premeditated crime intended to kill or maim the woman
permanently and act as a lesson to 'put her in her place'.
Domestic violence against women in India is a big problem. For
example, a paper published in the International Journal of
Criminology and Sociological Theory shows that in 2007, there
were 20,737 reported case of rape, 8,093 cases of death due to
dowry, and 10,950 cases of sexual harassment with total crime of
185,312 A U.N. Population Fund report claimed that up to 70
percent of married women aged 15–49 in India are victims of
beatings or coerced sex.
"Eve teasing" is a euphemism in India and Pakistan for sexual
harassment or molestation of women by men. This phenomenon
has resulted in various assaults against women. Half of the total
number of crimes against women reported in 1990 related to
molestation and harassment at the workplace. Many activists blame
the rising incidents of sexual harassment against women on the
influence of "Western culture". In 1987, The 'Indecent
Representation of Women (Prohibition) Act' was passed to prohibit
indecent representation of women through advertisements or in
publications, writings, paintings, figures or in any other manner.
In 1997, in a landmark judgement, the Supreme Court of India took
a strong stand against sexual harassment of women in the
workplace. The Court also laid down detailed guidelines for
prevention and redressing of grievances. The National Commission
for Women subsequently elaborated these guidelines into a Code of
Conduct for employers. The Indian Parliament is considering The
Protection of Women against Sexual Harassment at Workplace Bill,
2010, which would add protections for female workers in most
workplaces. It was passed by the Lok Sabha(the lower house of
the Indian Parliament on 3 September 2012. As of September 2012,
it has not been passed by the Rajya Sabha (the upper house of the
Abortion & Infanticide
The number of girls born and surviving in India is significantly less
compared with the number of boys, due to the disproportionate
numbers of female fetuses being aborted and baby girls deliberately
neglected and left to die. Compared to the normal ratio of births,
950 girls for every 1000 boys, most states of India, especially
Harayana, Mumbai and even overseas Indians, have much lower sex
ratios. It can be as low as 830 girls to 1000 boys. With increasing
misuse and affordability of fetus sex-determining devices, such as
ultrasound scan, the rate of female foeticide is rising sharply in
India. Female infanticide (killing of girl infants) is still prevalent in
some rural areas. The government and activist groups seek to raise
the status of girls and combat female infanticide. According to the
United Nations, it is estimated that as many as 2000 girls are
illegally aborted every day and approximately as many as an
expected 15 million girls were not born over the last decade.
India has a low sex ratio, the chief reason being that many women
die before reaching adulthood. Tribal societies in India have a better
sex ratio than all other caste groups. This is in spite of the fact that
tribal communities have far lower levels of income, literacy and
health facilities. Experts suggest that the low sex ratio in India can
be attributed to female infanticides and sex-selective abortions
among more urban populations.
Abortion $ Infanticide
Gender selection and selective abortion were banned in India
under Pre-conception and Pre-natal Diagnostics
Technique Act, in 1994, but the use of ultrasound scanning for
gender selection continues. Other institutional efforts, such as
advertisements calling female feticides a sin by the Health Ministry
of India and annual Girl Child Day can be observed to raise status
of girls and to combat female infanticide. But, it did not appear to
have much effect in the rate of female foeticide.
Female foeticide will decrease the population of female and
further skew the sex ratio of India. This will lead to problems like
marriage squeeze and lower replacement rate. In addition, it can
also cause greater abuse against women and higher crime rate. It
will have negative effects on the economy, such as lower female
participation rate and inefficient allocation of labour due to gender
Abortion $ Infanticide
In 1961, the Government of India passed the Dowry Prohibition
Act, making the dowry demands in wedding arrangements
illegal. However, many cases of dowry-related domestic violence,
suicides and murders have still been reported.
In 1985, the Dowry Prohibition (maintenance of lists of presents to
the bride and bridegroom) rules were framed. According to these
rules, a signed list of presents given at the time of the marriage to
the bride and the bridegroom should be maintained. The list should
contain a brief description of each present, its approximate value,
the name of whoever has given the present and his/her relationship
to the person. However, such rules are hardly enforced.
A 1997 report claimed that at least 5,000 women die each year
because of dowry deaths, and at least a dozen die each day in
'kitchen fires' thought to be intentional. The term for this is "bride
burning" and is criticised within India itself.
The most recent NCRB report said that 8,233 dowry death reports
were filed in the country in 2012.
Though it is gradually rising, the female literacy rate in India is
lower than the male literacy rate. According to Census of India
2011, literacy rate of females is 65.46% compared to males which is
82.14%. Compared to boys, far fewer girls are enrolled in the
schools, and many of them drop out. According to the National
Sample Survey Data of 1997, only the states of Kerala and
Mizoram have approached universal female literacy rates. According
to majority of the scholars, the major factor behind the improved
social and economic status of women in Kerala is literacy.
Under Non-Formal Education programme, about 40% of the
centres in states and 10% of the centres in UTs are
exclusively reserved for females. As of 2000, about 0.3 million NFE
centres were catering to about 7.42 million children, out of which
about 0.12 million were exclusively for girls. Certain state level
engineering, medical and other colleges like in Orissa have reserved
30% of their seats for females. In rural India girls continue to be
less educated than the boys.
According to a 1998 report by U.S. Department of Commerce, the
chief barrier to female education in India are inadequate school
facilities (such as sanitary facilities), shortage of female teachers and
gender bias in curriculum (majority of the female characters being
depicted as weak and helpless vs. strong, adventurous, and
intelligent men with high prestige jobs)
The Prime Minister of India and the Planning Commission also
vetoed a proposal to set up an Indian Institute of
Technology exclusively for females.
Although India had witnessed substantial improvements in female
literacy and enrolment rate since the 1990s, the quality of education
for female remains to be heavily compromised as the country
continues to hold greater value for male than female.
According to the Gender Gap Index 2011 released by the World
Economic forum (WEF), India was ranked 113 out of 135 countries
polled. This trend is very noticeable in states like Rajastan, Bihar
and Madhya Pradesh. This represents a poor distribution of
resources and opportunities amongst the male and female. Other
measures such as attendance rate and Gender Equality in Education
Index (GEEI) are also developed to further capture the quality of
education. In order for India to reach GEEI score of 95% by 2015
under the Millennium Development Goals, it has to triple its rate of
Women are not allowed to have combat roles in the armed forces.
According to a study carried out on this issue, a recommendation
was made that female officers be excluded from induction in close
combat arms, where chances of physical contact with the enemy are
high. The study also held that a permanent commission could not
be granted to female officers since they have neither been trained
for command nor have they been given the responsibility so far.
1.Sarojini Naidu - the Nightingale of India:
Sarojini Naidu is a renowned Indian poet who is
popularly known as the Nightingale of India.
Besides her wonderful poetry works in English,
she also became an active women freedom fighter
in the struggle for Indian Independence by the directions of
Mahatma Gandhi. She is the first Indian woman to become the
President of the Indian National Congress. After independence,
Sarojini Naidu became the governor of Uttar Pradesh and thus
became the first woman governor of India. She is a great patriot, an
efficient politician, a good orator and a wonderful administrator.
She is one of the top world famous personalities of the 20th
2. Indira Gandhi - the Woman of the Millennium:
Indira Priyadarshini Gandhi - the only daughter
of Pt. Jawaharlal Nehru - was born in 1917. She
entered politics at a very young age and become
the first women Prime Minister of India. She is the second longest
serving Prime Minister of India who served the country for a long
period. She was the strongest Prime Minister of India with great
administrative power and political foresight.
Sonia Gandhi is an Italian-born Indian and she
is the daughter of Indira Gandhi - the ex-Prime
Minister of India and wife of ex Prime Minister
Late Rajiv Gandhi. She is the highly influential
person of the present United Progressive
Alliance and was the Chairperson of the ruling UPA government in
India. She became the longest serving President of the Congress
1.Sprint Queen P.T.Usha:
Payyoli Tevaraparampil Usha popularly known as
P.T.Usha was one of the best women athletes of
India. She remained as the queen of track events
for nearly two decades. She has a number of
national and international awards to her credit. She has 33
international awards to her credit which include 13 gold medals in
the Asian Games. She is the recipient of the prestigious Arjuna
Award in the year 1984 which is given by the Govt of India. She is
also the recipient of Padma Sree award and was named as the
'Sportsperson of the Century' by the Indian Olympic Association.
She is yet another famous sportsperson who
brought international fame to India. She
represented the country in the South Asian
Federation Games held in 1984, 1986 and 1988 in which she
received 2 silver in Nepal, 2 silver medals in Bangladesh and 3 gold
medals in Pakistan respectively. She also participated in the Asian
Games held at South Korea (1986) and Beijing (1990)and has silver
medals to her credit. She also represented India in World Athletics
Championships in Rome (1987) and Tokyo (1991).
She is the recipient of Arjuna Award which is the most prestigious
award given to the best sportsperson.
3.Sania Mirza- the glamour girl of Indian sports:
She is a professional tennis player from India
who brought much name and fame to the
country through her powerful forehand ground
strokes. Presently she is ranked as No.1 tennis
player in singles as well as doubles. Her greatest achievement in her
tennis career was winning the mixed doubles crown in the 2009
Australian Open tennis tournament. She made India proud by her
wonderful achievement in the field of her choice.
She is the country's greatest women badminton
player who created a history by being ranked
No.2 in the world level in 2010. She made the
country proud by becoming the first Indian to
win a medal in the Badminton at Olympics when she received the
bronze medal at London Olympics in 2012. She is having a good
number of awards to her credit and she was awarded with the
prestigious Arjuna Award in 2009. She is also the recipient of Rajiv
Gandhi Khel Ratna award for badminton for the year 2009-10.
M.S.Subbulaxmi is a world renowned vocalist
and she is responsible for spreading the Indian
Carnatic music to the Western world and got
much applause from the the world around. She
is a versatile singer and is the first musician to receive Bharat Ratna
- the highest Civilian award of India. She has a divine tone in her
voice most of her musical works include devotional recitals only.
She is one of the most famous dancers from
India who is proficient not only in the Odissi
dance - the traditional classical dance of Odisha
but also she is well versed in Bharatanatyam
(Classical dance form of Tamilnadu),
Kuchipudi(Classical dance of Andhra Pradesh),
Manipuri (Classical dance of Manipur) and
Chau (tribal / folk dance of West Bengal)
dances. She has the credit of giving dance performances in nearly 87
countries and thus spread the classical dance forms of India to the
foreign countries. She is the recipient of prestigious Padma
Vibhushan award besides many other awards to her credit.
1.Mother Teresa: Though Mother Teresa is an
Albanian by birth, she became an Indian
citizen and is the founder of Missionaries
of Charity. She dedicated her life in
charity and free service to the destitute.
She received a number of awards which
include Nobel Peace Prize in 1979, Ramon
Magsaysay Award, Order of Merit from
United Kingdom and United States of America besides being
conferred with Bharat Ratna - the highest civilian award of India.
Mother Teresa got international fame as a humanitarian and for her
advocacy for the poor and helpless.
At Country Level
Sex Discrimination Act 1984-Austrailia.
Sex Discrimination Ordinance-Hong Kong.
Human Rights Act 1993-New Zealand.
Sex Discrimination Act 1975, amended by the Sex
Discrimination (Election Candidates) Act 2002-
Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978-United States.
Pre-conception and Pre-natal Diagnostics Technique
Act, in 1994-India.
Dowry Prohibition Act,1961-India.
At International Level
Convention against Discrimination in Education,
Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of
Discrimination Against Women, 1979
HOW YOU CAN
If you are interested in helping to stop female
infanticide, sex-selective abortion, female genital cutting,
or honor killing, you can start by embracing an attitude
of sensitivity to the specific issues girls face and
disseminating ideas of gender equality to people you
interact with – colleagues, students, children,
lawmakers, and friends. You can support organizations,
like Youth Advocate Program International, whose work
addresses discrimination against the girl child, write
letters to government officials to raise their concerns and
encourage them to act aggressively against a specific
practice, and get involved in grassroots organizing which
can lead to local, national, and international
Why There is a Need To Control Women Discrimination?
Women are usually viewed as dowry
burdens, the weaker gender, and
worthy of a lower social status
compared to men. This has led to
social and economic problems. This
subject raises the cultural aspects
about the role of a female child in
society, what her human rights are as
a human being? This is more
predominant in India as well as other
lesser developed countries. This will
lead to problems like marriage
squeeze and lower replacement rate.
In addition, it can also cause greater
abuse against women and higher
crime rate. It will have negative effects
on the economy, such as lower female
participation rate and inefficient
allocation of labour due to gender
For more details mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org