Skip to main content

Conservative compulsion forces higher percent of Gujarat women to do domestic work than most states

NSSO figures: rural+urban
By Rajiv Shah
Amidst the big talk around Gujarat women being more secure than most Indian states, what is perhaps forgotten is that many of them are unable to come out of the socio-religious constraints, which ties them to their domestic work full time, even as forcing them not to do any full-time job. A just-released National Sample Survey Organisation (NSSO) report, “Participation of Women in Specified Activities along with Domestic Duties”, has found that a much higher percentage of Gujarat women are driven by the conservative socio-religious framework compared to most Indian states in doing domestic work.
Based on a survey it carried out between July 2011 and June 2012, the NSSO report said, 18.7 per cent of rural women and 14.6 per cent in urban women do their domestic duties “because of socio-religious constraints.”
What should be puzzling for the state’s policy-makers and concerned individuals is, an inter-state comparison shows that a much lower percentage of rural women from 15 out of 20 major states are “constrained” to do domestic duties because of socio-religious constraints. The NSSO does not find the situation in urban areas any different: Here, 14 out of 20 major Indian states have a lower percentage of women feeling “constrained” by socio-religious considerations while doing domestic work.
In fact, just about 3 per cent of rural women in Uttarakhand, 3.8 per cent in Tamil Nadu, 4.6 per cent in Kerala, 5 per cent in Himachal Pradesh, 6.8 per cent in Karnataka, and 7.6 per cent in West Bengal cite “socio-religious constraint” as the chief reason for full-time involvement in domestic duties. This is against Gujarat’s 18.7 per cent, Haryana’s 18.9 per cent, Odisha’s 19.4 per cent, Punjab’s 28.1 per cent and Uttar Pradesh’s 28.8 per cent rural women citing the same constraint. Significantly, these states are also known for their conservatism towards women, including poor sex ratio.
NSSO figures: rural+urban
Things are not very different for urban women, either. As against Gujarat 14.6 per cent urban women finding socio-religious constraints as the main reason for doing domestic duty, the respective percentage for Kerala is 4.3 per cent, Jammu & Kashmir 5.7 per cent, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka and Himachal Pradesh 5.9 per cent each, Uttarakhand 6.9 per cent, and Andhra Pradesh 9.9 per cent. States with higher percentage of urban women than Gujarat citing this constraint are just four – Uttar Pradesh 29.9 per cent, Punjab 18.2 per cent, Rajasthan 16.9 per cent and Bihar 15.2 per cent.
A conservative atmosphere, naturally, would mean not allowing women to do full-time job – even within the household premises. Thus, Gujarat’s only 16.4 per cent of rural women told the NSSO surveyors that they are “willing” to do full-time work within household premises. This is lower than most Indian states except three (Punjab 13.5 per cent, Jammu & Kashmir 14.5 per cent, and Uttar Pradesh 16 per cent). As for the urban areas, Gujarat’s only 23.7 per cent of urban women said they were willing to accept full time work within household premises, again lower than most estates except seven.

Comments

TRENDING

132 Gujarat citizens, including IIM-A faculty, others declare solidarity with Kashmiris

Counterview Desk
A week after it was floated, 132 activists, academics, students, artists and other concerned citizens of Gujarat, backed by 118 living in different parts of India and the world, have signed a "solidarity letter" supporting the people of Jammu and Kashmir (J&K), who, it claims, have been silenced and held captive in their own land. The signatories include faculty members and scholars of the prestigious Indian Institute of Management-Ahmedabad (IIM-A).

Bharat Ratna nominee ‘joined hands’ with British masters to 'crush' Quit India

By Shamsul Islam*
The Quit India Movement (QIM), also known as ‘August Kranti' (August Revolution), was a nation-wide Civil Disobedience Movement for which a call was given on August 7, 1942 by the Bombay session of the All-India Congress Committee. It was to begin on August 9 as per Gandhi's call to 'Do or Die' in his Quit India speech delivered in Bombay at the Gowalia Tank Maidan on August 8. Since then August 9 is celebrated as August Kranti Divas.

Ceramic worker dies: 20,000 workers in Thangadh, Gujarat, 'risk' deadly silicosis

By Our Representative
Even as the country was busy preparing for the Janmashtami festival on Saturday, Hareshbhai, a 46-year-old ceramic worker from suffering from the fatal lung disease silicosis, passed away. He worked in a ceramic unit in Thangadh in Surendranagar district of Gujarat from 2000 to 2016.
Hareshbhai was diagnosed with the disease by the GCS Medical College, Naroda Road, Ahmedabad in 2014. He was found to be suffering from progressive massive fibrosis. He is left behind by his wife Rekha sister and two sons Deepak (18) and Umesh (12),
The death of Hareshbhai, says Jagdish Patel of the health rights group Peoples Training and Research Centre (PTRC), suggests that silicosis, an occupational disease, can be prevented but not cured, and the Factory Act has sufficient provisions to prevent this.
According to Patel, the pottery industry in the industrial town of Thangadh has evolved for a long time and locals as well as migrant workers are employed here. There are abou…

Gujarat's incomplete canals: Narmada dam filled up, yet benefits 'won't reach' farmers

By Our Representative
Even as the Gujarat government is making all out efforts to fill up the Sardar Sarovar dam on Narmada river up to the full reservoir level (FRL), a senior farmer rights leader has said the huge reservoir, as of today, remains a “mirage for the farmers of Gujarat”.
In a statement, Sagar Rabari of the Khedut Ekta Manch (KEM), has said that though the dam’s reservoir is being filled up, the canal network remains complete. Quoting latest government figures, he says, meanwhile, the command area of the dam has been reduced from 18,45,000 hectares (ha) to 17,92,000 ha.
“According to the website of the Sardar Sarovar Narmada Nigam Ltd, which was last updated on Friday, while the main canal, of 458 km long, has been completed, 144 km of ranch canals out of the proposed length of 2731 km remain incomplete.
Then, as against the targeted 4,569 km distributaries, 4,347 km have been constructed, suggesting work for 222 km is still pending. And of the 15,670 km of minor canal…

Cess for Gujarat construction workers: Spending less than 10%; no 'direct help' to beneficiaries

By Our Representative
While the Gujarat government’s Building and Other Construction Workers Welfare Board, set up in 2004, as of March 31, 2019, has collected a total cess of Rs 2,097.62 crore from the the builders, it has spent less than 10% -- Rs 197.17 crore. And, as on May 31, 2019, the total cess collection has reached Rs 2,583.16 crore, said a statement issued by Bandhkam Majur Sagathan general secretary Vipul Pandya.
Pointing out that just about 6.5 lakh out of 20 lakh workers have been registered under the board, Pandya said, vis-à-vis other states, Gujarat ranks No 13th in the amount spent on the welfare of the construction workers, while 11th in the amount collected.
And while the builders are obliged to pay just about 1% of the total cost of their project, the calculation of the cess is flawed: It is Rs 3,000 per square yard; accordingly, Rs 30 per square yard is collected. “Had the cess been collected on the real construction cost, it would have been at least Rs 7,000 cr…