I came across this excellent multimedia production by Mediastorm featuring the work of photojournalist Walter Astrada on the cultural pressure of women in India to bear a son. This preference originates from the belief that men make money while women, because of their expensive dowry costs, are a financial burden. The consequences of this preference is a disregard for the lives of women and girls. From birth until death they face a constant threat of violence. The write up on the piece says “The numbers are staggering. Since 1980, an estimated 40 million women are ‘missing,’ by way of abortion, neglect or murder. 7,000 female fetuses are aborted every day according to the U.N., aborted solely because they are girls. One dowry death is reported every 77 minutes. Countless others are never known.“
Do put aside some time to watch the following embedded video as well as the shorter Epilogue on the Mediastorm web site. It is a powerful piece of photojournalism and story telling. Mitu, the mother of twin daughters that was featured in the video has more of her story told at the following link: Mitu’s Story.
In India, women must confront the cultural pressure to bear a son. The consequences of this preference is a disregard for the lives of women and girls. From birth until death they face a constant threat of violence. See the project at http://mediastorm.com/publication/undesired