In a stunning revelation reported in The Telegraph Monday, parents in India are allegedly paying £2,000 (around $3200) to have their young daughters undergo gender reassignment surgery in order to turn them into sons -- all in the hopes of dodging the added expense of raising a girl. Indian culture favors males for their income earning potential and due to the fact that unlike females, they won't cost their families unnecessary educational expenses and wedding dowries.
Currently, there are 7 million more boys than girls under age six in India and there's clearly a reason for that. In a country where female foeticide (gender-based abortions) are commonplace, this new twist has many fearing children aren't safe even after they are born. Madhya Pradesh state government is already investigating 300 cases in which girls have reportedly undergone genitoplasty. The Telegraph goes on to explain:
The surgery, known as genitoplasty, fashions a penis from female organs, with the child being injected with male hormones to create a boy.
Dr V P Goswami, the president of the Indian Academy of Paediatrics in Indore, described the disclosures as shocking and warned parents that the procedure would leave their child impotent and infertile in adulthood.
"Genitoplasty is possible on a normal baby of both the sexes but later on these organs will not grow with the hormonal influence and this will lead to their infertility as well as their impotency. It is shocking news and we will be looking into it and taking corrective measures," he said. "Parents have to consider the social as well as the psychological impact of such procedures on the child."
Ranjana Kumari, a human rights advocate who has been leading the campaign against female feoticide told The Telegraph these gender reassignments performed at such a tender age and without consent shed light on India's increasing "social madness:"
She said she despaired that education had failed to stop the growing rejection of baby girls in India.
"People don't want to share their property or invest in girls' education or pay dowries. It's the greedy middle classes running after money. It is just so shocking and an outright violation of children's rights."
(H/T: The Telegraph)