SBS Radio App

Download the FREE SBS Radio App for a better listening experience

Gender advisor with the United Nations Population Fund, Kiran Bhatia, says that UN studies have found that “most communities where female foeticide is practiced have patriarchal family structures where the son is expected to inherit the head of the household role”.

“most communities where female foeticide is practiced have patriarchal family structures”

Scientia Professor at University of New South Wales and Evolutionary Biologist, Rob Brooks says his observations suggest “that societies where female foeticide is practised tend to lay emphasis on the male lineage or where the son is expected to take care of the parents in old age. In vast portions of Han Chinese society it’s the son who stays and looks after the parents in their old age and his wife and so raising a daughter is raising someone who is going to end up marrying and looking after someone else’s parents”.

Head of Department of Obstetrics & Gynaecology at James Cook University, Dr Ajay Rane, AO, says he was so moved by the issue of female foeticide in India he co-produced a video to bring about awareness on the subject.

According to Rane: “there is this almost compulsive desire to have a boy who will then carry the name of the family and who is supposed to be the one who looks after the parents when they get old.

And while there are exceptions to the rule but by and large the understanding is that that a son is supposed to look after the parents and the daughter is supposed to look after her (parents) in-laws”.

There is this almost compulsive desire to have a boy who will then carry the name of the family and who is supposed to be the one who looks after the parents when they get old.