Google, Yahoo, and Microsoft have reportedly agreed to block ads for services in India that determine a baby’s sex before birth. According to a report by Bloomberg, all three companies have pledged to honor bans on the promotion of sex-determination tests and related products. Google also reached out to the publication and said that it has taken action to prevent searches and have its advertising comply with local laws. This includes disabling auto-complete predictions for relevant terms on its site and displaying a warning that pre-natal sex determination is illegal in India. Yahoo said that it cannot comment on the matter as it is subjudice, while Microsoft did not respond.
Earlier this year, the court had approached the companies regarding the display of advertisements related to prenatal sex determination, which is banned in India. The court had told the companies to abide by the law cease their operations in the country. The companies had initially said that sweeping bans on offending keywords would also result in non promotional content like research reports and news articles being blocked.
Prenatal sex determination was banned in India in 1994 in an affort to curb female foeticide and infanticide in India. According to the 2011 census, India has 943 females for every 1000 males in the country.