In India cheap fetal ultrasound, cheap abortions, and a strong preference for sons has pushed the ratios of young girls to young boys 914 to 1000.
In 1961, for every 1,000 boys under the age of seven, there were 976 girls. Today, the figure has dropped to a dismal 914 girls.
This will have a number of long term impacts. Notably, lots of young men will feel frustrated by their poor marriage prospects. Will this translate into political unrest? Or will these guys become more depressed and withdrawn? Some young men might become more motivated to find ways to make more money. So maybe the economy will grow more as a result?
In Haryana state the ratio is even lower at 830 to 1000.
But Birbal was unable to find a bride in Haryana, which has the most unbalanced sex ratio in the country, with 877 women for every 1,000 men. Among under sevens, that ratio drops to just 830 girls for every 1,000 boys.
Whereas historically the families of brides have had to pay dowry the female shortage is flipping around who pays. How much does it cost a poor family to raise a daughter? Could the price for brides ever get so high that poor families will raise daughters for profit?
Men in Haryana, unable to find a bride at home, are willing to pay up to 100,000 rupees ($2,222) to marry an "imported" girl from states like West Bengal, Jharkhand, Bihar or Madhya Pradesh.
One effect for sure: Fewer wombs for baby-making mean slower population growth in India. Due to rapid population growth India's 1.21 billion population will surpass China's by 2025. India's government is offering cash to poor folks to delay reproduction, with future estimates for India's population ranging from 1.5 to 1.9 billion. Rising levels of education for girls will fertility.
Education alone is not enough to avoid the practice of sex-selective abortion. It is widely practiced in many countries, notably China. Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, South Korea, India, Serbia, and Belarus. This leads to bride markets across national borders.
|Share |||Randall Parker, 2011 May 29 10:19 PM Trends Demographic|