A UNICEF State of the World’s Children Report says that boys are outnumbering girls in India. It informs that against the global sex ratio of 954 girls to 1,000 boys, there are only 882 girls per 1,000 boys in India. Some 7000 girls are born in India daily, the report confirms which is out on December 12, 2006 and marks the 60th anniversary of the U.N body.
Compared to 1991 when only two districts had adverse female sex ratio, Salem (Tamilnadu) and Bhind (Madhya Pradesh) today the number has reached nearly 51 districts with more than 80 per cent districts where the situation is getting worse. The drip in female birth rate is, according to the report, mainly because of female feticide. The worst affected states include some of the most affluent areas like Haryana and Punjab where the advance prenatal diagnosis leads to a lot of termination of female foetuses. The discrimination does not end with abortion, but the female child has a lot to face even if it is lucky enough to see the light of the day. In states like Bihar, Andhra Pradesh and Chhattisgarh, the average age a woman gives birth for the first time is before she reaches 19 and this again leads to a lot of child deaths. In this context the UNICEF warned the States that “the alarming decline in the child sex ratio is likely to result in more girls being married at a younger age, more girls dropping out of education, increased mortality as a result of early child bearing and an associated increase in acts of violence against girls and women such as rape, abduction, trafficking and forced polyandry.”
However, in matters of maternal deaths India has improved a bit. While in the year 2000, India alone accounted for one-fourth of pregnancy related deaths of whole the world, now the status has improved to one death per seven minutes.