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Update on Trends in Sex Ratio at Birth in India

With additional data available at more regular intervals on sex ratio at birth, it is easier to track changes without depending on the decennial censuses. However, the diversity of sources also means differences in trends across sources and regions. A brief analysis of the latest available data is presented to identify the most recent trends and concerns in states that need attention, like north-western and eastern states of India.

In Rajan et al (2015) we analysed changes in the 0–1 year sex ratio (sex ratio at birth or SRB) and the 0–6 year sex ratio in India. This analysis was based on census data collected in 2001 and 2011 which contains information on about 20 to 21 million live births which occurred in the years preceding the censuses. Our analysis showed that the SRB declined over the 10-year period from 905 (female births per 1,000 male births) to 899 and that there has been no let-up in daughter deficit. A striking aspect of the analysis was that in the north-western states, which have a long history of high levels of daughter deficit, there was an increase in the SRB between 2001 and 2011 while southern and eastern states experienced declines between the two censuses.

Sources of Data

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Updated On : 20th Mar, 2017

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