India’s Femicide by the Tens of Millions Reveals Abortion’s Hatred of Women

Many of you have heard the phrase “What’s the most dangerous place on earth since 1973? A mother’s womb.” Well, if you happen to be female, your chances of life in many countries just diminished even further. This is the second article in our series on the threats to Life, Family and Family in India.

“Daughter Slaughter”: Feminists Turn Blind Eye

The people of India hate women so much, they’re massacring them by the millions. Estimates by CNN put the female death toll in India at 63 million women. These unborn, destroyed simply because they were female, is a national epidemic of femicide. The Population Research Institute’s (PRI) latest study, Sex-Selective Abortion in India, found nearly 16 million girls have been intentionally killed in the womb just since 1990. The Institute admits the actual number could be as high as over 20 million.

That’s over half a million girls “Daughter Slaughtered” every year. The callously bigoted homicides are rampant in Asia, the Caucasus, and the Balkans…but India and China are the worst anti-feminists by far. CNN classified the 63 million girls as “missing,” called them “unwanted,” and described the means of their absence as “sex-selection operations.”

You may ask well ask yourself, “What are the repercussions that affect me?” There are 39 million more marrying-aged young men (under 30) than women in India. Framed otherwise, 107 boys are born to every 100 females.That means there are vastly reduced numbers of women available to ground a family. Not only does this portend great loneliness, but serious societal ills such as trafficking, as women become in such short supply.

The truth is, the women are not “missing” at all. They are literally cut up, ripped apart, burned to death, and thrown away in land fills, garbage bins, and toilets across the country.

  • —and, they’re not “unwanted,” either. Each has been planned from the beginning of the universe with ineffable care and love.
  • —and, there is no “selection” going on. “Sex is not really being ‘selected,’” the American Orthodox Institute’s Fr. Johannes Jacobse pointed out. “A boy or girl is being destroyed.”

HLI India affiliate head, Milagres Pereira, shared an all-too-common scenario: “A couple of miles away from my place, a well educated and working couple killed three babies in the womb when they discovered they were girls.” The government concedes that girls are “notionally…unwanted.”

Milagres Pareira, head of HLI Goa, India

Abortion activists say the reason is traditional preference for boys and lack of law enforcement; pro-lifers say the reason is a culture of death and state-encouraged abortion. The two are not mutually exclusive, nor are these practices limited to city dwellers—they exist country-wide.

Human Life International Weighs In

Midwives “put a spoonful of un-husked rice into the [newborn’s] throat, so the soaked rice expands and chokes the child to death. As horrible as it may sound, this is the truth. [It’s] worse than what CNN reported.”

~Milagres Pareira, HLI India Affilate

HLI maintains not one but two affiliates in India, and additionally is holding its biennial pro-life conference there, Asia’s largest pro-life congress, in January 2020.

Several factors contribute to India’s massive gendercide. Some note ultrasound technology has become common and affordable, so parents can find out their baby’s sex before he or she is born. Many blame Indian authorities for not enforcing existing anti-sex-selection laws. Most admit that Hindu-dominant societies devalue women.

Hindu funeral rituals, said to ensure a good afterlife, must be done by sons. Caring for elderly parents is considered the duty of sons. Sons carry on the family name, and have inheritance rights. Daughters, on the other hand, are seen as a financial burden. Large dowries, though illegal, are common. Even physicians advertise gendercide services with slogans such as, “Spend Rs. 500 now, save Rs. 50,000 later.”

While acknowledging the factors above, pro-lifers say the root cause of India’s mass femicide is the nation’s growing culture of death via legalized and even state-encouraged abortion. Those who are not pro-life argue that the only solution remains death, albeit via contraception. So let’s get this straight. Just don’t have a child, because you might have a girl and that means abortion or infancticide. They want a boy. But in reality, an unborn baby boy is also in danger; overall abortions in India average 15 million annually, on a par with communist China. And also like China, India is on a similar track, with six states following two-child policies. Yes, if you think being a boy born in India is safe, you are sadly mistaken.

Once preborn human beings can be killed-on-demand, all life becomes expendable-at-will. As soon as abortion was legalized in 1971, families went into decline. The average Indian family had nearly six children the year before legalization; last year, families had just over two.

PRI study author Jonathan Abbamonte offers Nepal as an example.

Prior to the legalization of abortion in Nepal in 2002, sex-selective abortion was never a problem in that country. After abortion was legalized, however, the birth ratio became heavily skewed towards boys at second birth if the first child had been a girl. This occurred even though sex-selective abortion had been illegal.

Funded by U.S.-backed “aid” organizations, the government of India pushes abortion as a means of “population control.”

HLI’s Fr. Shenan J. Boquet notes that the multi-billion dollar “Aid and Development” industry has become the world’s biggest abortion promoter. “What happens to a [charitable] industry…when it internalizes the idea that the killing of innocents and the suppression of population are a matter of ‘health’ and ‘rights?'” Fr. Boquet asks. “Over several decades, the[ir] legitimate work…slowly became about reducing fertility…[and] population control.

UNFPA, WHO, UNICEF, UN Women, and OHCHR give lip service against sex-selection abortion but at the same time absolutely insist that abortion-on-demand be unrestricted and limitless. One UN interagency even called for expanding abortion to somehow cure femicide.

Fr. Boquet criticizes “population control” ideology for viewing people “as a problem to be reduced, rather than as individuals possessing innate dignity, made in the image of God.” He accuses some agencies of sexism for “using women’s legitimate health and justice concerns as cover to eliminate the poor.”

In summary, prenatal sex scanning may be illegal and carry penalties of huge fines and imprisonment, but, as Pereira explained, the law “doesn’t scare anyone because our nation has been deeply rooted in abortion since its legalization.”

What if you had an eraser, and could erase every female face from this image? Pray that through the intercession of the Blessed Mother, girls may be valued in India and throughout Asia.

Human Sacrifice

Sane minds agree that sex-selection abortion is a violation of the rights and dignity of women, which will lead to an escalation of violence. “Sex-selective abortion is one of the most pressing demographic and human rights issues facing India today,” Abbamonte proclaims. “An excess of single men may fuel the practice of child marriage and sex trafficking in the future.”

Life advocates say preborn girls have the right to be born, and pregnant women have the right not to be coerced or forced into aborting their daughters.

HLI’s Fr. Boquet advocates for international laws criminalizing sex-selection abortion. In 2012 he championed such a law in the United States, saying leaders “must have the moral courage to stand against this evil” in order to “protect the unborn” and to “protect women from being pressured to obtain gender selective abortions.”

Revealing a maniacal, blind allegiance to abortion at all costs, reaction from many proponents of abortion has been to support sex-selection abortion as just another “choice,” or to deny that it happens at all.

Bioethicist Fiorella Nash, in her book The Abolition of Woman, exposes the hypocrisy of feminists who say they stand for women yet support or remain silent on sex-selection abortions. Nash “calls mainstream feminists, journalists and Western politicians to account for their silence and –in some cases– vocal justification of the persecution of women because of an absolutist loyalty to abortion.”

“We must expose the anti-woman hypocrisy in the media which gives cover to the horrific practice of killing babies for the crime of being female,” Faith2Action’s Janet Porter said. “It is now obvious the fake news cares more about abortion than they do about the rights of girls and women.”

“Why aren’t all the #MeToo feminists protesting the systematic elimination of their gender?” Marie Tasy of New Jersey Right to Life asked.

“The fact that unwanted little girls are the primary victims should have every feminist up in arms to protect them, but there is loud silence,” Right to Life of Greater Cincinnati’s Paula Westwood concluded, “because sacrifice to the god of Abortion is more important than protecting tiny human beings.”

The cure for India’s femicide epidemic is not more abortion, more contraception, or more societally-sanctioned promiscuity. “Progress will be made when [societies’] anthropology is fixed—that is, when the truth about the sanctity of the human person is integrated into priorities, practices, and especially people,” Fr. Boquet concludes.

Others see “population”—a threat to the world. The Catholic Church sees persons—made in the image of God, each with potential to build communities and change the world for the better in just societies based on the law of nature and nature’s God.

Until then, the statistics make clear that China and India lead the world in the hatred of women.


Human Life International is working to bring India and all of Asia’s pro-life minds together. HLI’s Asia-Pacific Congress (ASPAC) on Faith, Life and Family is the biggest gathering of pro-life leaders in Asia and Oceania. ASPAC is a training ground for pro-life leaders and future leaders to be able to efficiently and effectively defend life in their respective countries.

The 22nd Asia-Pacific Congress on Faith, Life and Family will take place in Kerala, India this year. HLI will be featuring monthly, in-depth perspectives on India over the next months, culminating in ASPAC. Please contact us at for registration details. ASPAC dates are January 17-19, 2020, including the check-in and leaving after the pilgrimage, with check-in the days before and after.

The Very Reverend Dr. Mark Hodges is an archpriest in the Orthodox Church. Ordained in 1995, he and his wife of 36 years, Presbytera Donna, have eight children and seventeen grandchildren (counting one due in November and counting four miscarriages). All are married except two, one of which is 21-year old Micah, an abandoned autistic boy the Hodges adopted at age five. After high school, Father Mark underwent a personal crisis which led to a deeper conversion to the Lord Jesus. From that time on, his favorite scripture became Philippians 1:21, "To me, to live is Christ, and to die is gain.” He obtained a second Master’s With an undergraduate degree in Education and a Master’s in Psychological Counseling, later a second master’s in Orthodox Theology. Having served as everything from church pastor to hospital chaplain, he eventually founded St. Stephen the First Martyr Orthodox Mission in Lima, Ohio. To make ends meet he has also distinguished himself as a journalist for LifeSiteNews and other news outlets, anchored and produced for WTGN radio, worked as a professor and is secretary to the Lima/Allen County Right to Life Chapter and served on the Ohio Right to Life Education Committee. As a “P.S.” he was nearly an undergraduate major in theater and music, still loves to play keyboard to the drums and trombone - mostly for his family - but if life slows down he has a second career ready to go! Besides offices held in the Orthodox church, he is an author and has recorded three CDS. He also enjoys watching movies with his sweetheart in the evenings.

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  1. Jos Conil on October 12, 2019 at 11:48 AM

    This article is indeed very disturbing. You have rightly pointed out that India has a cultural problems that condones such murders. But any analysis of the problem would be incomplete without taking into consideration the exceptions, since India is a vast and diverse country. In Kerala for example sex selective abortion is virtually non existent and you have a gender ration of 1084 girls for 1000 boys. Also femicide is also more rampant in the north than the south. Please take into consideration these factors and also the please mentions the efforts that Indian pro lifers are taking to eradicate this deep rooted social evil.

    • HLI Staff on November 13, 2019 at 9:00 AM

      Dear Jos, thanks for weighing into the discussion. We actually have affiliates in India and are told that Kerala the total fertility rate is still very low, 1.7. Our affiliate in Goa agrees that Kerala has more pro-life consciousness than some other areas, but bluntly stated, pro-life activism in India is still extremely low compared with the U.S. We must pray together to end abortion here and there! Even the close to a million lives lost here are horrible numbers, but we do not have the femicide issue that exists there and other Asian countries. God bless you.

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