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The data was presented at a national consultation organised by the women and child development ministry on the Beti Bachao Beti Padhao (BBBP) programme here.
BBBP was launched in 2015 by PM Narendra Modi from Panipat in Haryana.
The southern state of Kerala has had a sex ratio at birth below 900, suggesting a strong son preference. Its southern neighbor, Tamil Nadu, with the same TFR, has had an essentially normal SRB for some time.
But Tamil Nadu has been particularly aggressive in promoting health, including combating sex-selective abortion.
Tamil Nadu’s example shows that the practice can be controlled.
The somewhat higher sex ratios in relatively poor and higher TFR states such as Uttar Pradesh and Bihar (not shown) may largely reflect the fact that the average of over four children per woman in those states makes the birth of a son much more likely.
While still a long way from the desired 950, the data indicate that a slow reversal has begun.
The pressure to have a son is often felt most intensively by young wives, who want to please their husband’s family.