People in rural India too are killing their unborn daughters, pulling down the child sex ratio across the country to its lowest since 1961 but the general sex ratio has moved up 10 points to 943 females for 1000 males.
The sex ratio in the 0-6 age group brings out the recent changes in the attitude and outlook towards the girl child and indicates the future trend of sex ratio in the population. Over the last 10 years, the child sex ratio has declined by 8 points to 919 females for 1000 males.
But the 11 point decline to 923 is sharper in rural areas than in urban areas where it reduced by just 1 point to 905.
“The new statistics lead us to believe that sex selection intervention is becoming rampant in rural areas too,” Census Commissioner C Chandramouli said. “This is an alarming trend.”
The only silver lining on this account is that the general sex ratio has gone up during the last decade, a development that census authorities attribute to the higher life expectancy of women.
Chandramouli added that this was a positive development at a macro level.
But at state or district levels, this would need to be seen in the social context because this also emphasises the need for a good social safety net for the women.