Background: Today, female feticide and gender preference are a big problem in India. Although there is so much emphasis against it, the problem has become aggravated. In this context, various studies showed that the male child preference leads to skewed sex ratio. The present paper is an attempt to determine the view of the people for giving their preference to the male child.
Objectives: The objectives were to study the preference of women for gender of child, as well as reasons for preference for it, and association between socioeconomic factors and demographic factors with gender preference.
Materials and Methods: It is a community-based crosssectional study, in which 500 married women of 1549 years of reproductive age group, 150 randomly selected women from one urban municipal ward, and 350 randomly selected women from seven villages of rural area were constituted the study population. Widow and separated women were excluded from the study. A pre-tested, semi‑structured questionnaire was administered to each individual to collect information. Microsoft Excel 2007 software and the Chi‑square test were used.
Results: Almost half of the women (51.4%) have preference for male child. Women from lower age group (65.25%), currently married (66.42%), Muslim religion (72.22%), lower education (59.01%), and low socioeconomic status (66.67%) and those who are laborer (71.83%) have male child preference.
Conclusions: This study concludes that more number of females have preference for male child in women of younger age group. Muslim religion and its customs, thoughts, and rearing practices make difference. Lower socio-economic status and poor education are also major contributory factor. Male child will support in old age and will take social responsibilities are the main basic reasons found to be associated with male child preference.
Key words: Reproductive Age Group Women; View of People; Female Feticide; Gender Preference; Skewed Sex ratio