DEMOGRAPHY AND GENDER BIAS
In any given nation or province the demographic pattern should show more females, say 1010, for every 1000 male population. This is the law of the Nature. Afew of the reasons why females should out-number males are:
– Female fetuses (babies inside the womb) have more resilience than the male ones as evidenced by the fact that 70% of spontaneously aborted fetuses are males.
– Unlike the popular perception, young and old females are more resistant to diseases and live longer than males. Moreover, heart attacks are less common among females than their male counterparts.
– Exposure to the danger of death like war is more among males than females.
This demographic feature may be turned on its head in any community where female feticide or infanticide (killing of girl child through the acts of omission or commission) is prevalent due to social bias against the girl child.
GENDER RATIO AS AN INDICATOR OF SOCIAL STATUS OF WOMEN IN A GIVEN COMMUNITY
In the Indian context, the state of Kerala is at the top with >1010 females for every 1000 males. (For centuries, Kerala practised the matriarchal social system which earned it the name of Stree Malayalam-the land of women). On the contrary, in the Northern States like Haryana, the figure is dipping below 900 females for every 100 males. The ante-natal sex determination through ultrasound and selective abortion of female fetuses is at root of this malady even though this has been banned under the law.