Female foeticide is the illegal practice of killing a foetus which is determined as a female. Female foeticide is prevalent in our country as a major social evil. The patriarchal social structure of India gives a secondary position to women.
Social belief goes that the family runs through a male and hence the birth of a male child in the family is imminent to the carrying forward of its generation. Social discrimination and the preference for sons have given rise to the rate of social sex determination.
Even some medical practitioners are making high incomes by determining pre-natal sex of the child and aborting foetus on the will of the parents. The practice is unlawful and demands strict punishment in form of fine or jail to the person requesting abortion of the unborn girl child as well as to the practitioner who gets the sex determined.
Some kind of complications in pregnancy can also demand surgical termination of pregnancy after eight weeks of conception. This is where the termination or abortion is legal and doctors may have to suggest and opt for discontinuance of pregnancy for the sake of health of the mother carrying the unborn child.
However, the technique of surgical termination is misused by some people in getting rid of the female foetus. Some people intentionally get the sex determined of the unborn child by using the technique of ultrasound and if it is determined as female foetus, they get removal done by surgery. Many societies in India face the problem of skewed male-female sex ratio which is unhealthy to any society. But the reckless practice is still on without realizing the ill effects and drastic consequences of the practice.
Abortion of female foetus is an act of murder. God is the author of life and nobody should have the right to take it. Some women themselves are in favour of getting their female foetus aborted through surgery which is a shameful act and must be condemned.
Some do it willfully while others are forced by family or are fearful of the social outcomes of bearing a girl child. But it in any case, this practice is illegal and disturbs the delicate equilibrium of the nature. Some states like Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh and Gujarat are states where the male-female ratio is most skewed and the menace of female foeticide is to blame.
The unscrupulous murder of female foetus has no grounds for justification. More and more people in urban as well as rural parts all over the country are getting involved in this malpractice. With PNDT (Pre Natal Diagnostics Techniques) Act 1994 being enforces, government attempted to regulate the use of pre-natal diagnostic techniques for legal or medical purposes and also prevent it by setting up a central body with powers and functions to check it.
But PNDT has failed to check the malpractice as the determination of sex and services needed for the same have proliferated accordingly. Law has no control in the wide distribution of ultrasound machines and also nothing can be done about the information that easily transmits through informal channels. This makes the law weak and there is no way to implement it to act as a watchdog for the misuse of the practice.
Many women continue to be forced by family members to get the determined female foetus aborted and doctors also continue to carry on the surgical procedure against the enforced law.
Not the whole doctor fraternity is to be blamed for such acts. There are few in the medical field who for the sake of profit continue to reveal the sex of the unborn child and also carry our abortions of such women. But there are some gynecologists who have begun to raise voice against the sex selective abortions. If Gynecologists band together and ask an ultrasonographer not to determine the sex of the foetus, the evil can still be curbed to quite an extent.
Female foeticide is a matter of shame for the couples who request for it and also for the doctors who perform the inhumane and unlawful act of aborting an unborn girl child for the sake of easy money. We must take it as a social and moral responsibility to stop the practice of female foeticide and also educate and encourage others to stop it completely.
A female has a right to take birth as she will be a daughter today and a wife and a future mother in the time to come.