Girls as young as one are being forced into sex change operations in India because parents want sons.
Hundreds go under the surgeon’s knife each year before being pumped full of hormone drugs, according to local press reports.
In India, girls can be regarded as a financial burden. Some parents are believed to pay £2,000 for treatment to “correct” a daughter.
Children’s rights groups are alarmed at the news of forced sex change operations and have called for an investigation.
There is also a problem in India of mothers aborting female babies.
Feminist author Taslima Nasreen said: “Shocking! Not only do people kill unborn girls, they turn girls into boys by genitoplasty.”
She added: “Doctors who practice illegal Female Foeticide & Genitoplasty should get life in prison.”
The surgeons behind the procedures say they only operate on children that are born with confused sex conditions.
But in India there is no way to monitor the accuracy of that claim.
Earlier this year it was reported that India now has seven million fewer girls than boys under the age of seven because baby girls are being aborted.
A study published in The Lancet estimated that 12 million girls were aborted in India over the last three decades.