Revise pathways to address gender inequality

Revise pathways to address gender inequality

The Finance Ministry has identified gender inequality as one of the major obstacles in development of the country and suggested a revision in the pathways adopted by the government to address gender inequality.

Concerned over the lower position of women on the Human Development Index (HDI), and their lower participation in workforce, the ministry stated that gender discrimination in India is embedded in the social fabric and continues in most spheres such as access to education to social and economic opportunities.

The Survey stated: “Gender discrimination in India starts from the womb with sex determination tests and abortion of the female foetuses, discrimination in terms of nutrition offered to the girl child, the length and type of schooling the girl child avails of vis-a-vis her male siblings, inadequate or lack of access to higher education, discrimination in opportunities of employment and wages paid and unequal share in inheritance.” “Society and the government has relied on the legal route to address each of these discriminations, without matching changes in the social fabric or role model set by leaders,” it asserts.

 “As per the status of disposal of cases involving Crimes against Women, reported by the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) in 2013, out of 38,901 dowry death cases registered, only 13.6 per cent of cases have been tried, out of which only 4.4 per cent cases have resulted in convictions,” says the Survey. “Women are still positioned outside the ambit of economic empowerment and financial inclusion. In 2012, only 24.2 per cent of women had accounts in scheduled commercial banks,” the survey added.

The survey suggests that a social problem can to a large extent be addressed by overall economic improvement and said that the pathways to direct economic empowerment of women require education, skill development and employwomen in productive spheres.

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