Sex Selective abortions among South Asian Immigrants in the United States

A number of news stories appeared recently in press about Sex selective abortions among South Asian Immigrant population in the United States. A close examination of the source of these reports indicate that these stories were based on a ethnographic study involving a sample of less than 100 Asian Indian women (mostly from Northern Indian states of UP, Punjab, Bihar, Rajasathan, etc) and these women were selected because of their parity rather than randomness. It is sad that these researchers generalize the findings from these ethnographic studies to the whole community in the United States.
However, the research took a special turn when Rep. Christopher Smith and his colleagues started drafting a bill to ban sex selective abortions among South Asian immigrant population in the United States without any kind of scientific evidence to demonstrate that such a thing is happening in the community. The birth registration data is plagued with misclassification race of child, particularly for Asian Indians in the 1990s and 2000s. Preliminary examination of the 2010 US Census data shows that the sex ratios of White population for 0-1 age group compare similar to Asian Indian sex ratios for the same age groups..

Table 1: Sex Ratios of Asian Indians Alone, Asian Indian mixed and White population in the United States, 2010

White Alone Race
Age  Whites Alone Asian Indian Alone Mixed Asian Indians
    Under 1 year 104.9



    1 year 104.8



    2 years 104.9



    3 years 105



    4 years 105.5



    5 years 105.1



Source: US Census ,2 010
Sex Ratio is defined as number of males per 100 females
© Dr. KV Rao, India Network Foundation


We will provide more scientific studies examining the sex ratios in the US among various population groups.. but the recent alerts are false at least further studies on this subject.

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