Proposals to strengthen ban on prenatal sex determination hide inaction, activists claim

BMJ 2008; 336 doi: (Published 08 May 2008) Cite this as: BMJ 2008;336:1038
  1. Ganapati Mudur
  1. 1New Delhi

Doctors in India who disclose fetal sex to would be parents could face harsher punishment under proposals by the Indian government to crack down on prenatal sex determination and selective abortion of female fetuses.

The proposals are intended to strengthen India’s 14 year old law that prohibits prenatal sex determination and expand action to correct social prejudices at the root of India’s declining sex ratio, health officials said last week.

India’s sex ratio in children up to 6 years of age had dropped from 945 girls for every 1000 boys in 1991 to 927 girls in 2001, the year of the last census. The figure was less than 800 in several states, including affluent urban districts.

Health officials accept estimates that …

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