Women Status and Empowerment in India
According to India's 2011 Census, the country's population has increased by 17.6% since 2001. The Census shows that 51.6% of the population is male, while 48.4% is female. Unfortunately, the 2011 Census data also shows that the gender ratio for children below six years has dropped. This decline is unabated since the 1961 Census. This gender bias draws attention to a lingering societal flaw which economic growth has not been able to correct. Gender equality is a constituent of development, as well as an instrument of development. No country can be deemed developed if half of its population is severely disadvantaged in terms of basic needs, livelihood options, access to knowledge, and political voice. The advancement and empowerment of women in India has been a leading objective of state policy ever since the attainment of Independence in 1947. India's Eleventh Five Year Plan (2007-2012) recognized women, for the first time, not just as equal citizens, but as agents of economic and social growth. Women's lack of economic empowerment not only impedes growth and poverty reduction, but also has a host of other negative impacts, including less favorable education and health outcomes for children. Thus, it is extremely important to ensure that women are economically, socially, and politically empowered. This book provides a vivid account of the problems faced by Indian women, particularly those belonging to vulnerable and disadvantaged groups. It explains the various policies, programs, and schemes initiated by the government of India, in co-operation with other agencies for the welfare, development, and empowerment of women.
Publication Date: 7/31/2012