A father of five daughters allegedly slit open his pregnant wife's stomach to find out if she was bearing a son this time.
The husband - who has been named Pannalal - carried out the attack in the northern state of Uttar Pradesh, India, on September 19.
He attacked his wife with a sharp-edged weapon and has been taken into custody according to Pravin Singh Chauhan, a senior police official.
His wife, believed to be around 35, was seven-months pregnant according to police.
She is in a serious condition in a Bareilly hospital.
The family of the victim alleged that Pannalal wanted a son as he already had five daughters.
They suspect he committed the crime to know if the baby was male or female according to The Hindustan Times.
In India, the preference of sons still remains strong, with boys adding to the family wealth, while daughters drain it with dowries.
According to Newsweek 'sex selective abortions are widespread in India' where families would prefer to have sons.
They said according to a 2007 report by the International Center for Research on Women (ICRW) son preference in the county is a 'well-documented phenomenon'.
This has implications for skewed sex ratios, female feticide and higher mortality rates for girls.
This article has been adapted from its original source.
© Associated Newspapers Ltd.