Developed states show more skewed sex ratio: Report

Posted By: Pti
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New Delhi, Mar 13: Delhi, Punjab and Haryana may be economically progressive but have a skewed sex ratio compared to other states, a new study by National Commission for Women (NCW) said on Tuesday.

Decades of struggle against gender discrimination has borne little with statistics showing that "huge" gender deficits continue to persist in the country, especially in economically developed states, it said.

The report, 'Understanding Gender Equality in India 2012', a joint initiative of NCW and the UN, is based on data collected from various ministries and commissions, including the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, the Election Commission and the Home Ministry.

While there has been a marginal increase in the country's sex ratio from 933 in 2001 to 940 in 2011, significant variations exist among the states, with Kerala and Puducherry recording a sex ratio in favour of women, while Delhi, Chandigarh and Haryana have an adverse ratio.

Interestingly, Delhi, Chandigarh and Haryana are economically quite progressive based on the per capita Net State Domestic Product (NSDP) which shows that Haryana has a per capita NSDP of Rs 78781 while Delhi and Punjab have per capita NSDP of Rs 116886 and Rs 62153 respectively, it said.

The report also noted that the difference between the number of men and women is lesser in rural areas than in urban India, with the former being pegged at 919 women for every 1000 men and the latter 902 per 1000. The worst hit district is Haryana's Jhajjar with a ratio of 774 to 1000 and next is Mahendragarh with a sex ratio of 778 females to 1000 males.

"It is a national emergency," NCW chairperson Mamta Sharma said, while releasing the report. "Everyone says India is a developing nation, but how can we say this when the discrimination against women is so stark, so open," she asked.

Figures related to violence against women in the country are also dismal. According to the report, 30 per cent of the women in India experienced physical violence while 8 per cent of the women experienced sexual violence. While Bihar registered the highest number of cases of physical violence against women, West Bengal tops the list in terms of number of sexual offences.

"It is not just at home that women face discrimination. Our Constitution is not spared either. Women occupy less than 8 per cent of the Cabinet positions, less than 9 per cent of seats in high courts and Supreme Court and less than 12 per cent of administrators and managers are women," said Charu Wali Khanna, quoting the report.

"The data is pointing to the fact that unless a comprehensive multi-pronged approach to gender equality is conceptualised and orchestrated, a girl's survival will not essentially translate into securing her freedoms and further visibility," she said.


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