Technological advances have significantly impacted India's recent growth. But one technology may be causing more harm than good.
India is experiencing an alarming rise in sex-selective abortions. As the middle class has grown, more pregnant women are able to afford ultrasounds. One result is that many couples are choosing to abort female fetuses. Traditionally, boys are preferred over girls — they carry on the family name, can more easily find paid work, and don’t require expensive dowries. Even though India is becoming increasingly modernized, these traditional values remain intact.
The numbers tell the story: In 1981, India had 962 girls for every 1,000 boys. In the 2001 census, the ratio was 927 to 1,000. Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh recently called the problem a "national shame."
Indian society is starting to experience the repercussions. With fewer available women to marry, some Indian men are resorting to buying their brides from poor communities outside their own, the BBC reports.