Prominent voices joined in the criticism. “The outrageous and violent forced- abortion incident in June is not unique to Shaanxi”, wrote Liang Jianzhang, on Sina Weibo, China’s version of Twitter. Mr Liang is chief executive of Ctrip, one of China’s most successful travel companies. “Abolition of the absurd family-planning policy is the only way to root out this kind of evil,” he went on. Mr Liang’s post has been retweeted more than 18,000 times.
The scandal is a blow to the one-child policy’s public image, says He Yafu, a demographer and critic of the policy. That image has never been good, even if in recent years many learned to live with it. In 1983, 14m women had abortions organised by family-planning committees (many of them coerced). In 2009, there were 6m. The number has declined in recent years as local officials have more incentives to impose fines on extra births rather than prevent them altogether.Thus, persons of means can elect to pay a fine that varies by region and by family income; in many cases it is way beyond the ability of the average citizen. Known in China as the "social maintenance fee," it can be negotiated downward by having the right political connections. For the rest, chiefly the poor, it seems their options are limited: undergo forced abortions, all in the name of state family planning.
The rest of the article can be read at [The Economist]