Gist of Sex-Ratio Notes | Study Gist of Rajya Sabha TV / RSTV (now Sansad TV) - UPSC

UPSC: Gist of Sex-Ratio Notes | Study Gist of Rajya Sabha TV / RSTV (now Sansad TV) - UPSC

The document Gist of Sex-Ratio Notes | Study Gist of Rajya Sabha TV / RSTV (now Sansad TV) - UPSC is a part of the UPSC Course Gist of Rajya Sabha TV / RSTV (now Sansad TV).
All you need of UPSC at this link: UPSC
Introduction:

The latest National Family and Health Survey (NFHS-5), facts sheets of which were released recently, has indicated positive growth in the sex ratio of India. As seen from the NHFS-5 data, for the first time since Independence, the number of women in India have surpassed the number of men, which is unprecedented. India now has 1,020 women for every 1000 men. During NFHS-3, conducted in 2005-06, the sex ratio was 1000:1000 and in NFHS-4 done in 2015-16 it declined to 991:1000. The NFHS-5 figures have also shown that the sex ratio at birth improved from 919 in 2015-16 to 929 in 2019-20. These statistics are a significant moment in India’s socio-economic and demographic transformation story and other findings of NFHS also convey a similar message

Highlights of the Report:
  • Women outnumber men, fertility has decreased, and India is getting older: There were 1,020 women for 1000 men in the country in 2019-2021.
  • This is the highest sex ratio for any NFHS survey as well as since the first modern synchronous census conducted in 1881.
  • The Total Fertility Rate (TFR) has also come down below the threshold at which the population is expected to replace itself from one generation to next. TFR was 2 in 2019-2021, just below the replacement fertility rate of 2.1.
  • Children’s nutrition improved but at a slower pace: The share of stunted (low height for age), wasted (low weight for height), and underweight (low weight for age) children have all come down since the last NFHS conducted in 2015-16.
  • However, the share of severely wasted children has not, nor has the share of overweight (high weight for height) or anaemic children.
  • India might be food secure, but nutrition is a problem for adults too: Though India might have achieved food security, 60% of Indians cannot afford nutritious diets.
Consequences of Low Child Sex Ratio:
  • The shortage of women has led to a sharp rise in violence against them
    • This has led to a situation where, apart from the ingrained son preference, people don’t want girls all the more as they feel that it is difficult to keep them safe
  • In a study done by the Centre for Social Research in Haryana, fear of violence is a cause for female foeticide
  • It will impact marriage patterns in several ways
    • Having lesser women of marriageable age will mean that a significant proportion of men will have to delay their marriage
  • The reduced demographic share of women, in democratic regimes would translate into a weaker political voice in public decision-making, a trend that could be reinforced by women’s lessened involvement in non-domestic activities, such as outside employment and civil life
Skewed sex ratio could upset the gains from a falling fertility rate:
  • Fertility has been declining in India for some time now.
  • SRS report estimated the Total Fertility Rate (TFR), the number of children a mother would have at the current pattern of fertility during her lifetime, as 2.2 in the year 2018.
  • Fertility is likely to continue to decline and it is estimated that replacement TFR of 2.1 would soon be, if not already, reached for India as a whole. As fertility declines, so does the population growth rate.
  • This report estimated the natural annual population growth rate to be 1.38 per cent in 2018. With India’s estimated population of 137 crore, this means that net 1.9 crore persons would have been added that year.
  • A comparison of 2011 and 2018 SRS statistical reports shows that TFR declined from 2.4 to 2.2 during this period. Fertility declined in all major states.
  • In 2011, 10 states had a fertility rate below the replacement rate. This increased to 14 states (including two new newly carved states Telangana and Uttarakhand).
  • The annual natural population growth rate also declined from 1.47 to 1.38 per cent during this period.
The steps taken to improve the sex ratio in India
  • Complete ban under law on sex determination during pregnancy under the PCPDNT Act
  • Declaring 24th January as the National Girl Child Day in 2012
  • Sabla scheme launched on the International Women’s day in 2011, aims at enabling self-development and empowerment of adolescent girls, improving their health and nutrition status; and spreading awareness about health, hygiene, nutrition, reproductive health, family and child care
  • Beti Bachao Beti Padhao Scheme was launched in 2015 in Panipat, Haryana to address the issue of decline in child sex ratio, whose objectives are:
    • Prevention of gender biased sex selective elimination
    • Ensuring survival & protection of the girl child
    • Ensuring education and participation of the girl child
  • Other recommendations/suggestions:
    • Rolling out campaigns on sensitisation towards women and children
    • Effective implementation of the existing women- and children-related policies
    • Improving women’s status in the society, could help change the bias for son preference
    • Investing on education and economic prosperity could help empower women and reduce gender gap.
The document Gist of Sex-Ratio Notes | Study Gist of Rajya Sabha TV / RSTV (now Sansad TV) - UPSC is a part of the UPSC Course Gist of Rajya Sabha TV / RSTV (now Sansad TV).
All you need of UPSC at this link: UPSC

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