Female foeticide and infanticide are still alive in certain pockets of Tamil Nadu despite officials saying cases have declined considerably. The State’s sex ratio, which is the number of females born for every 1,000 males, has been improving slowly in the last few years.
TN's sex ratio is 996 females to every 1,000 males. The State's child sex ratio is 943 girls to every 1,000 boys. But Tamil Nadu has a long way to go in protecting its girls.
Doctors and officials are coming across suspicious deaths of otherwise healthy baby girls in certain parts of the State.
In Vellore district during death audits, one or two cases of deaths due to milk aspiration involving female babies are reported every month.
In Tiruvannamalai district at least one suspected case of female infanticide is reported every three months. Tiruvannamalai has enforced the Pre-Conception and Pre-Natal Diagnostic Techniques Act, 1994 to curb female foeticide.
Indicators to point out the prevalence of female foeticide and infanticide in a particular district are low sex ratio at birth, high newborn mortality within 28 days of birth and high second trimester abortions.
While infanticide is difficult to ascertain unless deaths of female newborns are investigated sex selection abortions are still rampant in certain districts.