Social Issue : April 2021 Current Affair Notes | EduRev

Current Affairs & Hindu Analysis: Daily, Weekly & Monthly

UPSC : Social Issue : April 2021 Current Affair Notes | EduRev

 Page 1


	
6.	SOCIAL	ISSUES	
6.1.	GLOBAL	GENDER	GAP	REPORT	
Why in news? 
Recently, World Economic Forum (WEF) released Global 
Gender Gap Report 2021.  
Global Gender Gap Report  
• Global Gender Gap Index was first introduced by the 
WEF in 2006 as a framework to benchmark progress on 
disparities between women and men across countries, 
and over time. 
• Global Gender Gap Index measures scores on a 0 to 100 
scale and scores can be interpreted as the distance to 
parity (i.e., the percentage of the gender gap that has 
been closed). 
• Global Gender Gap Report 2021 benchmarks 156 
countries across four thematic dimensions (in bracket, 
percentage of the gender gap that has been closed at 
global level). 
Key highlights of report 
• The overall global gender gap is projected to 
close in 135.6 years (which is a significant 
increase from 99.5 years in previous report). 
• Global top 10 continues to be dominated by 
Nordic countries, with —Iceland, Norway, 
Finland and Sweden—in the top five. 
•  South Asia is the second-lowest performer 
after the Middle East and North 
Africa combined, bridging 62.3% of its gender gap.  
• Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic on Gender Gap:  
o Women experienced both higher unemployment rates and a more subdued re-entry into employment. 
E.g., ILO estimates project that 5% of all employed women lost their jobs globally versus 3.9% of 
employed men. 
o There is a more severe destruction of overall roles in industries with higher participation of women, such 
as the Consumer sector, Media and Communication etc. 
o Longer “double-shift” of unpaid work in a context of school closures and limited availability of care 
services have contributed to an overall difficulty in maintaining work-life balance among women with 
children. 
• Gender Gaps in Jobs of Tomorrow:  
o Future gender gaps are likely to be driven by occupation segregation in emerging roles, which in turn 
would lead to wage inequality. 
o Roles common among low- to middle-income women are likely to be disproportionately represented 
among jobs destroyed by automation. 
o Gender gaps are more likely in fields that require disruptive technical skills, e.g., in Cloud Computing 
women make up just 14% of the workforce. Similar is the case in Engineering, Data and AI etc. 
• Shaping a Gender-Equal Recovery: Report made following recommendations: 
o Further investments are needed in the care sector which remains poorly funded, partially informal in 
nature and providing low wages.  
o Policies and practices for overcoming occupational segregation by gender by re-deploying and re-
employing women in emerging jobs.  
o Effective mid-career reskilling policies for women, combined with managerial practices which embed 
sound, unbiased hiring and promotion practices. 
World Economic Forum  
• It was established in 1971 as a not-for profit foundation and 
is headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland. 
• It is the International Organization for Public-Private 
Cooperation and engages the foremost political, business 
and other leaders of society to shape global, regional and 
industry agendas. 
Page 2


	
6.	SOCIAL	ISSUES	
6.1.	GLOBAL	GENDER	GAP	REPORT	
Why in news? 
Recently, World Economic Forum (WEF) released Global 
Gender Gap Report 2021.  
Global Gender Gap Report  
• Global Gender Gap Index was first introduced by the 
WEF in 2006 as a framework to benchmark progress on 
disparities between women and men across countries, 
and over time. 
• Global Gender Gap Index measures scores on a 0 to 100 
scale and scores can be interpreted as the distance to 
parity (i.e., the percentage of the gender gap that has 
been closed). 
• Global Gender Gap Report 2021 benchmarks 156 
countries across four thematic dimensions (in bracket, 
percentage of the gender gap that has been closed at 
global level). 
Key highlights of report 
• The overall global gender gap is projected to 
close in 135.6 years (which is a significant 
increase from 99.5 years in previous report). 
• Global top 10 continues to be dominated by 
Nordic countries, with —Iceland, Norway, 
Finland and Sweden—in the top five. 
•  South Asia is the second-lowest performer 
after the Middle East and North 
Africa combined, bridging 62.3% of its gender gap.  
• Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic on Gender Gap:  
o Women experienced both higher unemployment rates and a more subdued re-entry into employment. 
E.g., ILO estimates project that 5% of all employed women lost their jobs globally versus 3.9% of 
employed men. 
o There is a more severe destruction of overall roles in industries with higher participation of women, such 
as the Consumer sector, Media and Communication etc. 
o Longer “double-shift” of unpaid work in a context of school closures and limited availability of care 
services have contributed to an overall difficulty in maintaining work-life balance among women with 
children. 
• Gender Gaps in Jobs of Tomorrow:  
o Future gender gaps are likely to be driven by occupation segregation in emerging roles, which in turn 
would lead to wage inequality. 
o Roles common among low- to middle-income women are likely to be disproportionately represented 
among jobs destroyed by automation. 
o Gender gaps are more likely in fields that require disruptive technical skills, e.g., in Cloud Computing 
women make up just 14% of the workforce. Similar is the case in Engineering, Data and AI etc. 
• Shaping a Gender-Equal Recovery: Report made following recommendations: 
o Further investments are needed in the care sector which remains poorly funded, partially informal in 
nature and providing low wages.  
o Policies and practices for overcoming occupational segregation by gender by re-deploying and re-
employing women in emerging jobs.  
o Effective mid-career reskilling policies for women, combined with managerial practices which embed 
sound, unbiased hiring and promotion practices. 
World Economic Forum  
• It was established in 1971 as a not-for profit foundation and 
is headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland. 
• It is the International Organization for Public-Private 
Cooperation and engages the foremost political, business 
and other leaders of society to shape global, regional and 
industry agendas. 
	
o Countries are invited to join the Global Accelerators Learning Network, which helps create informal 
exchange on successful local initiatives between countries. The Accelerator model focuses on: 
ü Hardwire gender parity into the post COVID-19 world of work, 
ü Close gender gaps in remuneration between and within sectors, 
ü Enable women's participation in the labour force, 
ü Advance more women into management and leadership. 
Performance of India  
• India has slipped 28 places (as compared last year) to rank 140th among 156 countries.  
• India is the third-worst performer among South Asian countries, with Pakistan and Afghanistan trailing and 
Bangladesh being at the top. 
• India has closed 62.5% of its gender gap to date. India’s indicators across parameters are as follows: 
	
Political 
empowerment 
• There is a significant decline in the number of women ministers (from 23.1 per cent in 2019 
to 9.1 per cent in 2021). 
• Share of women in parliament remains stagnant at 14.4%. 
Health and 
survival 
dimension 
• India is among the five worst performers. 
• Wide sex ratio at birth gaps is due to high incidence of gender-based sex-selective practices. 
• More than one in four women has faced intimate violence in her lifetime. 
Educational 
Attainment 
• On this subindex, 96.2% of the gender gap has been closed, with parity achieved in primary, 
secondary and tertiary education. 
• Yet, gender gaps persist in terms of literacy: one third of women are illiterate (34.2%) 
compared to 17.6% of men. 
Economic 
participation and 
opportunity 
• Women’s labour force participation rate saw a decline from 24.8 percent to 22.3 percent. 
• In addition, the share of women in professional and technical roles declined further to 29.2 
percent. 
• Women’s estimated earned income is only one-fifth of men’s. 
 
6.2.	WOMEN	AND	MEN	IN	INDIA	REPORT	
Why in news? 
Recently, Women 
and Men in India 
report, 2020 was 
released by 
National Statistical 
Office. 
 
About National Statistical Office (NSO) 
• NSO is the statistics wing of Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation (MoSPI) 
and consists of the Central Statistical Office (CSO), the Computer center and the National 
Sample Survey Office (NSSO). 
o MoSPI has two wings, one relating to Statistics and the other Programme 
Implementation.  
• NSO acts as the nodal agency for planned development of the statistical system in the 
country and lays down and maintains norms and standards in the field of statistics. 
Page 3


	
6.	SOCIAL	ISSUES	
6.1.	GLOBAL	GENDER	GAP	REPORT	
Why in news? 
Recently, World Economic Forum (WEF) released Global 
Gender Gap Report 2021.  
Global Gender Gap Report  
• Global Gender Gap Index was first introduced by the 
WEF in 2006 as a framework to benchmark progress on 
disparities between women and men across countries, 
and over time. 
• Global Gender Gap Index measures scores on a 0 to 100 
scale and scores can be interpreted as the distance to 
parity (i.e., the percentage of the gender gap that has 
been closed). 
• Global Gender Gap Report 2021 benchmarks 156 
countries across four thematic dimensions (in bracket, 
percentage of the gender gap that has been closed at 
global level). 
Key highlights of report 
• The overall global gender gap is projected to 
close in 135.6 years (which is a significant 
increase from 99.5 years in previous report). 
• Global top 10 continues to be dominated by 
Nordic countries, with —Iceland, Norway, 
Finland and Sweden—in the top five. 
•  South Asia is the second-lowest performer 
after the Middle East and North 
Africa combined, bridging 62.3% of its gender gap.  
• Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic on Gender Gap:  
o Women experienced both higher unemployment rates and a more subdued re-entry into employment. 
E.g., ILO estimates project that 5% of all employed women lost their jobs globally versus 3.9% of 
employed men. 
o There is a more severe destruction of overall roles in industries with higher participation of women, such 
as the Consumer sector, Media and Communication etc. 
o Longer “double-shift” of unpaid work in a context of school closures and limited availability of care 
services have contributed to an overall difficulty in maintaining work-life balance among women with 
children. 
• Gender Gaps in Jobs of Tomorrow:  
o Future gender gaps are likely to be driven by occupation segregation in emerging roles, which in turn 
would lead to wage inequality. 
o Roles common among low- to middle-income women are likely to be disproportionately represented 
among jobs destroyed by automation. 
o Gender gaps are more likely in fields that require disruptive technical skills, e.g., in Cloud Computing 
women make up just 14% of the workforce. Similar is the case in Engineering, Data and AI etc. 
• Shaping a Gender-Equal Recovery: Report made following recommendations: 
o Further investments are needed in the care sector which remains poorly funded, partially informal in 
nature and providing low wages.  
o Policies and practices for overcoming occupational segregation by gender by re-deploying and re-
employing women in emerging jobs.  
o Effective mid-career reskilling policies for women, combined with managerial practices which embed 
sound, unbiased hiring and promotion practices. 
World Economic Forum  
• It was established in 1971 as a not-for profit foundation and 
is headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland. 
• It is the International Organization for Public-Private 
Cooperation and engages the foremost political, business 
and other leaders of society to shape global, regional and 
industry agendas. 
	
o Countries are invited to join the Global Accelerators Learning Network, which helps create informal 
exchange on successful local initiatives between countries. The Accelerator model focuses on: 
ü Hardwire gender parity into the post COVID-19 world of work, 
ü Close gender gaps in remuneration between and within sectors, 
ü Enable women's participation in the labour force, 
ü Advance more women into management and leadership. 
Performance of India  
• India has slipped 28 places (as compared last year) to rank 140th among 156 countries.  
• India is the third-worst performer among South Asian countries, with Pakistan and Afghanistan trailing and 
Bangladesh being at the top. 
• India has closed 62.5% of its gender gap to date. India’s indicators across parameters are as follows: 
	
Political 
empowerment 
• There is a significant decline in the number of women ministers (from 23.1 per cent in 2019 
to 9.1 per cent in 2021). 
• Share of women in parliament remains stagnant at 14.4%. 
Health and 
survival 
dimension 
• India is among the five worst performers. 
• Wide sex ratio at birth gaps is due to high incidence of gender-based sex-selective practices. 
• More than one in four women has faced intimate violence in her lifetime. 
Educational 
Attainment 
• On this subindex, 96.2% of the gender gap has been closed, with parity achieved in primary, 
secondary and tertiary education. 
• Yet, gender gaps persist in terms of literacy: one third of women are illiterate (34.2%) 
compared to 17.6% of men. 
Economic 
participation and 
opportunity 
• Women’s labour force participation rate saw a decline from 24.8 percent to 22.3 percent. 
• In addition, the share of women in professional and technical roles declined further to 29.2 
percent. 
• Women’s estimated earned income is only one-fifth of men’s. 
 
6.2.	WOMEN	AND	MEN	IN	INDIA	REPORT	
Why in news? 
Recently, Women 
and Men in India 
report, 2020 was 
released by 
National Statistical 
Office. 
 
About National Statistical Office (NSO) 
• NSO is the statistics wing of Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation (MoSPI) 
and consists of the Central Statistical Office (CSO), the Computer center and the National 
Sample Survey Office (NSSO). 
o MoSPI has two wings, one relating to Statistics and the other Programme 
Implementation.  
• NSO acts as the nodal agency for planned development of the statistical system in the 
country and lays down and maintains norms and standards in the field of statistics. 
	
Key Highlights 
Population 
related 
statistics 
• India’s projected population in 2021 is 136.13 Crore with 48.65% female population. 
• The projected sex ratio is likely to increase from 943 in 2011 to 948 in 2021. 
• Sex ratio at birth was 899 in 2016-18 against 896 in 2015-17. (Higher in rural areas than urban). 
• Women’s mean age at marriage at all India level in 2018 is 22.3 years which showed an increase of 
0.2 years from 2017.  
Health 
Statistics 
• Infant Mortality Rate (IMR) has decreased from 39 in 2014 to 32 in 2018. 
• Maternal Mortality Ratio (MMR) decreased from 212 in 2007-09 to 113 in 2016-18. 
• Total Fertility Rate (TFR) for literate population of rural India was observed at 2.3 as compared to1.7 
in urban areas.   
Education 
• At all India level, the literacy rate has increased from 73 in 2011 to 77.7 in 2017 (female and male 
literacy rate at 70.3 and 84.7 respectively). 
• Only 3.1 % females and 4.5 % males were pursuing technical/professional courses. 
Participation 
in Economy 
• In rural sector, Worker Population Ratio (WPR) was 19.0 for females and 52.1 for males. 
o In Urban sector, the ratio is 14.5 for females and 52.7 for males. 
• Majority of the females (59.6%) and males (57.4%) workers were self-employed in rural area.  
• In urban sector, 54.7% females and 47.2% males were regular wage/salaried employee.  
• Casual labour among the female workers and male workers were higher in rural area as compared 
to urban. 
• On an average 134 minutes were spent in a day by females for “Unpaid care giving services for 
household members” against 76 minutes spent by males on the same activity. 
Participation 
in Decision 
Making 
• Percentage of female electors participating in General Elections went up from 65.6% in Sixteenth to 
67.2% in Seventeenth Lok Sabha Elections. 
• There is an upward trend in the number of female candidates contested as well as elected from 
14th to 17
th
 Lok Sabha General Election. 
Impediments 
in 
Empowerment 
• In 2019, three major crimes viz. Cruelty by Husband and Relatives (31%), Assault on women with 
intent to outrage her modesty and Kidnapping & Abduction constituted 71% of the total crime 
committed against women. 
• Percentage of differently-abled persons was 1.9% for females and 2.4% for males. 
6.3.	REPRODUCTIVE	HEALTH	
Why in News? 
Recently UNFPA launched the 
State of World Population Report, 
2021 titled My Body Is My Own. 
Key highlights of the report 
• The report measures women’s 
access to bodily autonomy through their power to make their own decisions about their reproductive health 
care, contraceptive use and sexual relations.  
• Despite constitutional guarantees of gender equality in many countries, worldwide, on average, women enjoy 
just 75 per cent of the legal rights of men. 
Reproductive Health and India 
• World Health organisation (WHO) defines reproductive health as a state of complete physical, mental and 
social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity, in all matters relating to the reproductive 
system and to its functions and processes. 
• Reproductive matters encompass rights that enable individuals to make informed choices and decisions 
regarding their sexual and reproductive health needs, and to do so free from discrimination, coercion and 
violence. 
• In India, according to NFHS-4 (2015-2016), only about 12% of currently married women (15-49 years of age) 
independently make decisions about their own healthcare. 
• Regarding the power to decide about use of contraception, 
o Only 8% of currently married women (15-49 years) do it independently,  
Page 4


	
6.	SOCIAL	ISSUES	
6.1.	GLOBAL	GENDER	GAP	REPORT	
Why in news? 
Recently, World Economic Forum (WEF) released Global 
Gender Gap Report 2021.  
Global Gender Gap Report  
• Global Gender Gap Index was first introduced by the 
WEF in 2006 as a framework to benchmark progress on 
disparities between women and men across countries, 
and over time. 
• Global Gender Gap Index measures scores on a 0 to 100 
scale and scores can be interpreted as the distance to 
parity (i.e., the percentage of the gender gap that has 
been closed). 
• Global Gender Gap Report 2021 benchmarks 156 
countries across four thematic dimensions (in bracket, 
percentage of the gender gap that has been closed at 
global level). 
Key highlights of report 
• The overall global gender gap is projected to 
close in 135.6 years (which is a significant 
increase from 99.5 years in previous report). 
• Global top 10 continues to be dominated by 
Nordic countries, with —Iceland, Norway, 
Finland and Sweden—in the top five. 
•  South Asia is the second-lowest performer 
after the Middle East and North 
Africa combined, bridging 62.3% of its gender gap.  
• Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic on Gender Gap:  
o Women experienced both higher unemployment rates and a more subdued re-entry into employment. 
E.g., ILO estimates project that 5% of all employed women lost their jobs globally versus 3.9% of 
employed men. 
o There is a more severe destruction of overall roles in industries with higher participation of women, such 
as the Consumer sector, Media and Communication etc. 
o Longer “double-shift” of unpaid work in a context of school closures and limited availability of care 
services have contributed to an overall difficulty in maintaining work-life balance among women with 
children. 
• Gender Gaps in Jobs of Tomorrow:  
o Future gender gaps are likely to be driven by occupation segregation in emerging roles, which in turn 
would lead to wage inequality. 
o Roles common among low- to middle-income women are likely to be disproportionately represented 
among jobs destroyed by automation. 
o Gender gaps are more likely in fields that require disruptive technical skills, e.g., in Cloud Computing 
women make up just 14% of the workforce. Similar is the case in Engineering, Data and AI etc. 
• Shaping a Gender-Equal Recovery: Report made following recommendations: 
o Further investments are needed in the care sector which remains poorly funded, partially informal in 
nature and providing low wages.  
o Policies and practices for overcoming occupational segregation by gender by re-deploying and re-
employing women in emerging jobs.  
o Effective mid-career reskilling policies for women, combined with managerial practices which embed 
sound, unbiased hiring and promotion practices. 
World Economic Forum  
• It was established in 1971 as a not-for profit foundation and 
is headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland. 
• It is the International Organization for Public-Private 
Cooperation and engages the foremost political, business 
and other leaders of society to shape global, regional and 
industry agendas. 
	
o Countries are invited to join the Global Accelerators Learning Network, which helps create informal 
exchange on successful local initiatives between countries. The Accelerator model focuses on: 
ü Hardwire gender parity into the post COVID-19 world of work, 
ü Close gender gaps in remuneration between and within sectors, 
ü Enable women's participation in the labour force, 
ü Advance more women into management and leadership. 
Performance of India  
• India has slipped 28 places (as compared last year) to rank 140th among 156 countries.  
• India is the third-worst performer among South Asian countries, with Pakistan and Afghanistan trailing and 
Bangladesh being at the top. 
• India has closed 62.5% of its gender gap to date. India’s indicators across parameters are as follows: 
	
Political 
empowerment 
• There is a significant decline in the number of women ministers (from 23.1 per cent in 2019 
to 9.1 per cent in 2021). 
• Share of women in parliament remains stagnant at 14.4%. 
Health and 
survival 
dimension 
• India is among the five worst performers. 
• Wide sex ratio at birth gaps is due to high incidence of gender-based sex-selective practices. 
• More than one in four women has faced intimate violence in her lifetime. 
Educational 
Attainment 
• On this subindex, 96.2% of the gender gap has been closed, with parity achieved in primary, 
secondary and tertiary education. 
• Yet, gender gaps persist in terms of literacy: one third of women are illiterate (34.2%) 
compared to 17.6% of men. 
Economic 
participation and 
opportunity 
• Women’s labour force participation rate saw a decline from 24.8 percent to 22.3 percent. 
• In addition, the share of women in professional and technical roles declined further to 29.2 
percent. 
• Women’s estimated earned income is only one-fifth of men’s. 
 
6.2.	WOMEN	AND	MEN	IN	INDIA	REPORT	
Why in news? 
Recently, Women 
and Men in India 
report, 2020 was 
released by 
National Statistical 
Office. 
 
About National Statistical Office (NSO) 
• NSO is the statistics wing of Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation (MoSPI) 
and consists of the Central Statistical Office (CSO), the Computer center and the National 
Sample Survey Office (NSSO). 
o MoSPI has two wings, one relating to Statistics and the other Programme 
Implementation.  
• NSO acts as the nodal agency for planned development of the statistical system in the 
country and lays down and maintains norms and standards in the field of statistics. 
	
Key Highlights 
Population 
related 
statistics 
• India’s projected population in 2021 is 136.13 Crore with 48.65% female population. 
• The projected sex ratio is likely to increase from 943 in 2011 to 948 in 2021. 
• Sex ratio at birth was 899 in 2016-18 against 896 in 2015-17. (Higher in rural areas than urban). 
• Women’s mean age at marriage at all India level in 2018 is 22.3 years which showed an increase of 
0.2 years from 2017.  
Health 
Statistics 
• Infant Mortality Rate (IMR) has decreased from 39 in 2014 to 32 in 2018. 
• Maternal Mortality Ratio (MMR) decreased from 212 in 2007-09 to 113 in 2016-18. 
• Total Fertility Rate (TFR) for literate population of rural India was observed at 2.3 as compared to1.7 
in urban areas.   
Education 
• At all India level, the literacy rate has increased from 73 in 2011 to 77.7 in 2017 (female and male 
literacy rate at 70.3 and 84.7 respectively). 
• Only 3.1 % females and 4.5 % males were pursuing technical/professional courses. 
Participation 
in Economy 
• In rural sector, Worker Population Ratio (WPR) was 19.0 for females and 52.1 for males. 
o In Urban sector, the ratio is 14.5 for females and 52.7 for males. 
• Majority of the females (59.6%) and males (57.4%) workers were self-employed in rural area.  
• In urban sector, 54.7% females and 47.2% males were regular wage/salaried employee.  
• Casual labour among the female workers and male workers were higher in rural area as compared 
to urban. 
• On an average 134 minutes were spent in a day by females for “Unpaid care giving services for 
household members” against 76 minutes spent by males on the same activity. 
Participation 
in Decision 
Making 
• Percentage of female electors participating in General Elections went up from 65.6% in Sixteenth to 
67.2% in Seventeenth Lok Sabha Elections. 
• There is an upward trend in the number of female candidates contested as well as elected from 
14th to 17
th
 Lok Sabha General Election. 
Impediments 
in 
Empowerment 
• In 2019, three major crimes viz. Cruelty by Husband and Relatives (31%), Assault on women with 
intent to outrage her modesty and Kidnapping & Abduction constituted 71% of the total crime 
committed against women. 
• Percentage of differently-abled persons was 1.9% for females and 2.4% for males. 
6.3.	REPRODUCTIVE	HEALTH	
Why in News? 
Recently UNFPA launched the 
State of World Population Report, 
2021 titled My Body Is My Own. 
Key highlights of the report 
• The report measures women’s 
access to bodily autonomy through their power to make their own decisions about their reproductive health 
care, contraceptive use and sexual relations.  
• Despite constitutional guarantees of gender equality in many countries, worldwide, on average, women enjoy 
just 75 per cent of the legal rights of men. 
Reproductive Health and India 
• World Health organisation (WHO) defines reproductive health as a state of complete physical, mental and 
social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity, in all matters relating to the reproductive 
system and to its functions and processes. 
• Reproductive matters encompass rights that enable individuals to make informed choices and decisions 
regarding their sexual and reproductive health needs, and to do so free from discrimination, coercion and 
violence. 
• In India, according to NFHS-4 (2015-2016), only about 12% of currently married women (15-49 years of age) 
independently make decisions about their own healthcare. 
• Regarding the power to decide about use of contraception, 
o Only 8% of currently married women (15-49 years) do it independently,  
	
o For nearly 1 in 10 women, 
it is the husband who 
largely takes decisions 
about the use of 
contraception.   
• Information provided to 
women about contraception 
is limited, e.g., Only 47% 
women using a contraceptive 
were informed about the side 
effects of the method. 
Barriers to reproductive Health 
• Lack of accessibility: Decisions 
about contraception and 
reproductive health care are 
sometimes impeded by the 
distance to clinics and 
facilities, especially in rural 
areas. 
o Majority of women and 
girls in India continue to 
experience delays or 
denials in accessing safe, quality and legal abortion care.  
• Availability related issues: Absence of adolescent- and youth-responsive services, shortages of preferred 
methods of contraception, poor-quality or poorly managed services, services that are staffed by judgmental 
providers and lack of privacy. 
• Inadequate Policies: such as  non-recognition of marital rape, absence of Comprehensive Sexuality Education 
(CSE) as per international standards, health systems’ guidelines may be based on a more conservative 
interpretation of the law. 
• Marital practices: Women experiencing 
abuse in marriage are more likely to test 
positive for HIV and other sexually 
transmitted infection. Also, a study in India 
documented negative reproductive health 
consequences of child marriages.  
• Age based Discrimination: For e.g., 
Unequal access by adolescents to sexual 
and reproductive health information and 
services. 
• Structural obstacles: Religion and gender 
norms can influence the extent to which 
laws are implemented or enforced.  
• Lack of related data: Women’s informed decision-making is poorly measured, and data are missing or not 
regularly produced on women’s use of health services as well as on laws guaranteeing full and equal access 
to reproductive health care. 
• Lack of literacy and awareness about rights: The shortening of formal education for girls has a real impact on 
their reproductive health and their ability to make autonomous decisions. 
o A study showed that, the notion of consent within marriage is considered irrelevant because sex is thought 
to be a marital duty and therefore not a matter of consent. 
 
United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) 
• It is the United Nations sexual and reproductive health agency. 
• It is an international development agency that promotes the 
right of every woman, man and child to enjoy a life of health 
and equal opportunity. 
• The State of World Population is an annual report published by 
the UNFPA. 
• UNFPA supports countries in using population data for policies 
and program to reduce poverty and to ensure that  
o Every pregnancy is wanted, 
o Every birth is safe,  
o Every young person is free of HIV/AIDS, and  
o Every girl and woman is treated with dignity and respect. 
Key programmes for addressing Reproductive Health of women in India 
• National Health Mission 2013 included following components: 
o Reproductive Maternal Neonatal Child and Adolescent Health 
(RMNCH+A) programme. 
o Janani Suraksha Yojana (JSY) to reduce maternal and neo-natal 
mortality by promoting institutional delivery. 
• Rashtriya Kishor Swasthya Karykram 2014 to enable all adolescents to 
realize their full potential by making informed and responsible decisions 
related to their health. 
• Pradhan Mantri Surakshit Matritva Abhiyan (PMSA) to provide assured, 
comprehensive and quality antenatal care, free of cost, universally to all 
pregnant women. 
• Pradhan Mantri Matru Vandana Yojana (PMMVY), a maternity benefit 
programme in accordance with the provision of the National Food Security 
Act, 2013. 
• Following three legislations were proposed to protect the reproductive 
rights of women. 
	
Page 5


	
6.	SOCIAL	ISSUES	
6.1.	GLOBAL	GENDER	GAP	REPORT	
Why in news? 
Recently, World Economic Forum (WEF) released Global 
Gender Gap Report 2021.  
Global Gender Gap Report  
• Global Gender Gap Index was first introduced by the 
WEF in 2006 as a framework to benchmark progress on 
disparities between women and men across countries, 
and over time. 
• Global Gender Gap Index measures scores on a 0 to 100 
scale and scores can be interpreted as the distance to 
parity (i.e., the percentage of the gender gap that has 
been closed). 
• Global Gender Gap Report 2021 benchmarks 156 
countries across four thematic dimensions (in bracket, 
percentage of the gender gap that has been closed at 
global level). 
Key highlights of report 
• The overall global gender gap is projected to 
close in 135.6 years (which is a significant 
increase from 99.5 years in previous report). 
• Global top 10 continues to be dominated by 
Nordic countries, with —Iceland, Norway, 
Finland and Sweden—in the top five. 
•  South Asia is the second-lowest performer 
after the Middle East and North 
Africa combined, bridging 62.3% of its gender gap.  
• Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic on Gender Gap:  
o Women experienced both higher unemployment rates and a more subdued re-entry into employment. 
E.g., ILO estimates project that 5% of all employed women lost their jobs globally versus 3.9% of 
employed men. 
o There is a more severe destruction of overall roles in industries with higher participation of women, such 
as the Consumer sector, Media and Communication etc. 
o Longer “double-shift” of unpaid work in a context of school closures and limited availability of care 
services have contributed to an overall difficulty in maintaining work-life balance among women with 
children. 
• Gender Gaps in Jobs of Tomorrow:  
o Future gender gaps are likely to be driven by occupation segregation in emerging roles, which in turn 
would lead to wage inequality. 
o Roles common among low- to middle-income women are likely to be disproportionately represented 
among jobs destroyed by automation. 
o Gender gaps are more likely in fields that require disruptive technical skills, e.g., in Cloud Computing 
women make up just 14% of the workforce. Similar is the case in Engineering, Data and AI etc. 
• Shaping a Gender-Equal Recovery: Report made following recommendations: 
o Further investments are needed in the care sector which remains poorly funded, partially informal in 
nature and providing low wages.  
o Policies and practices for overcoming occupational segregation by gender by re-deploying and re-
employing women in emerging jobs.  
o Effective mid-career reskilling policies for women, combined with managerial practices which embed 
sound, unbiased hiring and promotion practices. 
World Economic Forum  
• It was established in 1971 as a not-for profit foundation and 
is headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland. 
• It is the International Organization for Public-Private 
Cooperation and engages the foremost political, business 
and other leaders of society to shape global, regional and 
industry agendas. 
	
o Countries are invited to join the Global Accelerators Learning Network, which helps create informal 
exchange on successful local initiatives between countries. The Accelerator model focuses on: 
ü Hardwire gender parity into the post COVID-19 world of work, 
ü Close gender gaps in remuneration between and within sectors, 
ü Enable women's participation in the labour force, 
ü Advance more women into management and leadership. 
Performance of India  
• India has slipped 28 places (as compared last year) to rank 140th among 156 countries.  
• India is the third-worst performer among South Asian countries, with Pakistan and Afghanistan trailing and 
Bangladesh being at the top. 
• India has closed 62.5% of its gender gap to date. India’s indicators across parameters are as follows: 
	
Political 
empowerment 
• There is a significant decline in the number of women ministers (from 23.1 per cent in 2019 
to 9.1 per cent in 2021). 
• Share of women in parliament remains stagnant at 14.4%. 
Health and 
survival 
dimension 
• India is among the five worst performers. 
• Wide sex ratio at birth gaps is due to high incidence of gender-based sex-selective practices. 
• More than one in four women has faced intimate violence in her lifetime. 
Educational 
Attainment 
• On this subindex, 96.2% of the gender gap has been closed, with parity achieved in primary, 
secondary and tertiary education. 
• Yet, gender gaps persist in terms of literacy: one third of women are illiterate (34.2%) 
compared to 17.6% of men. 
Economic 
participation and 
opportunity 
• Women’s labour force participation rate saw a decline from 24.8 percent to 22.3 percent. 
• In addition, the share of women in professional and technical roles declined further to 29.2 
percent. 
• Women’s estimated earned income is only one-fifth of men’s. 
 
6.2.	WOMEN	AND	MEN	IN	INDIA	REPORT	
Why in news? 
Recently, Women 
and Men in India 
report, 2020 was 
released by 
National Statistical 
Office. 
 
About National Statistical Office (NSO) 
• NSO is the statistics wing of Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation (MoSPI) 
and consists of the Central Statistical Office (CSO), the Computer center and the National 
Sample Survey Office (NSSO). 
o MoSPI has two wings, one relating to Statistics and the other Programme 
Implementation.  
• NSO acts as the nodal agency for planned development of the statistical system in the 
country and lays down and maintains norms and standards in the field of statistics. 
	
Key Highlights 
Population 
related 
statistics 
• India’s projected population in 2021 is 136.13 Crore with 48.65% female population. 
• The projected sex ratio is likely to increase from 943 in 2011 to 948 in 2021. 
• Sex ratio at birth was 899 in 2016-18 against 896 in 2015-17. (Higher in rural areas than urban). 
• Women’s mean age at marriage at all India level in 2018 is 22.3 years which showed an increase of 
0.2 years from 2017.  
Health 
Statistics 
• Infant Mortality Rate (IMR) has decreased from 39 in 2014 to 32 in 2018. 
• Maternal Mortality Ratio (MMR) decreased from 212 in 2007-09 to 113 in 2016-18. 
• Total Fertility Rate (TFR) for literate population of rural India was observed at 2.3 as compared to1.7 
in urban areas.   
Education 
• At all India level, the literacy rate has increased from 73 in 2011 to 77.7 in 2017 (female and male 
literacy rate at 70.3 and 84.7 respectively). 
• Only 3.1 % females and 4.5 % males were pursuing technical/professional courses. 
Participation 
in Economy 
• In rural sector, Worker Population Ratio (WPR) was 19.0 for females and 52.1 for males. 
o In Urban sector, the ratio is 14.5 for females and 52.7 for males. 
• Majority of the females (59.6%) and males (57.4%) workers were self-employed in rural area.  
• In urban sector, 54.7% females and 47.2% males were regular wage/salaried employee.  
• Casual labour among the female workers and male workers were higher in rural area as compared 
to urban. 
• On an average 134 minutes were spent in a day by females for “Unpaid care giving services for 
household members” against 76 minutes spent by males on the same activity. 
Participation 
in Decision 
Making 
• Percentage of female electors participating in General Elections went up from 65.6% in Sixteenth to 
67.2% in Seventeenth Lok Sabha Elections. 
• There is an upward trend in the number of female candidates contested as well as elected from 
14th to 17
th
 Lok Sabha General Election. 
Impediments 
in 
Empowerment 
• In 2019, three major crimes viz. Cruelty by Husband and Relatives (31%), Assault on women with 
intent to outrage her modesty and Kidnapping & Abduction constituted 71% of the total crime 
committed against women. 
• Percentage of differently-abled persons was 1.9% for females and 2.4% for males. 
6.3.	REPRODUCTIVE	HEALTH	
Why in News? 
Recently UNFPA launched the 
State of World Population Report, 
2021 titled My Body Is My Own. 
Key highlights of the report 
• The report measures women’s 
access to bodily autonomy through their power to make their own decisions about their reproductive health 
care, contraceptive use and sexual relations.  
• Despite constitutional guarantees of gender equality in many countries, worldwide, on average, women enjoy 
just 75 per cent of the legal rights of men. 
Reproductive Health and India 
• World Health organisation (WHO) defines reproductive health as a state of complete physical, mental and 
social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity, in all matters relating to the reproductive 
system and to its functions and processes. 
• Reproductive matters encompass rights that enable individuals to make informed choices and decisions 
regarding their sexual and reproductive health needs, and to do so free from discrimination, coercion and 
violence. 
• In India, according to NFHS-4 (2015-2016), only about 12% of currently married women (15-49 years of age) 
independently make decisions about their own healthcare. 
• Regarding the power to decide about use of contraception, 
o Only 8% of currently married women (15-49 years) do it independently,  
	
o For nearly 1 in 10 women, 
it is the husband who 
largely takes decisions 
about the use of 
contraception.   
• Information provided to 
women about contraception 
is limited, e.g., Only 47% 
women using a contraceptive 
were informed about the side 
effects of the method. 
Barriers to reproductive Health 
• Lack of accessibility: Decisions 
about contraception and 
reproductive health care are 
sometimes impeded by the 
distance to clinics and 
facilities, especially in rural 
areas. 
o Majority of women and 
girls in India continue to 
experience delays or 
denials in accessing safe, quality and legal abortion care.  
• Availability related issues: Absence of adolescent- and youth-responsive services, shortages of preferred 
methods of contraception, poor-quality or poorly managed services, services that are staffed by judgmental 
providers and lack of privacy. 
• Inadequate Policies: such as  non-recognition of marital rape, absence of Comprehensive Sexuality Education 
(CSE) as per international standards, health systems’ guidelines may be based on a more conservative 
interpretation of the law. 
• Marital practices: Women experiencing 
abuse in marriage are more likely to test 
positive for HIV and other sexually 
transmitted infection. Also, a study in India 
documented negative reproductive health 
consequences of child marriages.  
• Age based Discrimination: For e.g., 
Unequal access by adolescents to sexual 
and reproductive health information and 
services. 
• Structural obstacles: Religion and gender 
norms can influence the extent to which 
laws are implemented or enforced.  
• Lack of related data: Women’s informed decision-making is poorly measured, and data are missing or not 
regularly produced on women’s use of health services as well as on laws guaranteeing full and equal access 
to reproductive health care. 
• Lack of literacy and awareness about rights: The shortening of formal education for girls has a real impact on 
their reproductive health and their ability to make autonomous decisions. 
o A study showed that, the notion of consent within marriage is considered irrelevant because sex is thought 
to be a marital duty and therefore not a matter of consent. 
 
United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) 
• It is the United Nations sexual and reproductive health agency. 
• It is an international development agency that promotes the 
right of every woman, man and child to enjoy a life of health 
and equal opportunity. 
• The State of World Population is an annual report published by 
the UNFPA. 
• UNFPA supports countries in using population data for policies 
and program to reduce poverty and to ensure that  
o Every pregnancy is wanted, 
o Every birth is safe,  
o Every young person is free of HIV/AIDS, and  
o Every girl and woman is treated with dignity and respect. 
Key programmes for addressing Reproductive Health of women in India 
• National Health Mission 2013 included following components: 
o Reproductive Maternal Neonatal Child and Adolescent Health 
(RMNCH+A) programme. 
o Janani Suraksha Yojana (JSY) to reduce maternal and neo-natal 
mortality by promoting institutional delivery. 
• Rashtriya Kishor Swasthya Karykram 2014 to enable all adolescents to 
realize their full potential by making informed and responsible decisions 
related to their health. 
• Pradhan Mantri Surakshit Matritva Abhiyan (PMSA) to provide assured, 
comprehensive and quality antenatal care, free of cost, universally to all 
pregnant women. 
• Pradhan Mantri Matru Vandana Yojana (PMMVY), a maternity benefit 
programme in accordance with the provision of the National Food Security 
Act, 2013. 
• Following three legislations were proposed to protect the reproductive 
rights of women. 
	
	
Global Conventions supporting 
Reproductive rights 
• International Covenant on 
Economic, Social and Cultural 
Rights, 1996. 
• Convention on the Elimination of 
All Forms of Discrimination against 
Women, 1979 
• Beijing Declaration and Platform 
for Action of the Fourth World 
Conference on Women. 
• The Sustainable Development 
Goals (SDGs) and the preceding 
Millennium Development Goals 
(MDGs) also encompass several 
goals that directly as well as 
indirectly recognise reproductive 
rights. 
o Target 5.6 of SDG ensure 
universal access to sexual and 
reproductive health and reproductive rights. 
Road Ahead 
• International Center for Research on Women (ICRW) has identified four overarching themes as crucial for 
improving reproductive health of Youth in India: 
o Develop cost effective strategies,  
o Address gender-based constraints to reproductive health,  
o Create community-based interventions, and  
o Involve men and boys. 
• Laws, policies and programming must take into account the differing needs and vulnerabilities of women, 
children, LGBTI communities, migrants and people in rural areas.  
• Supportive laws and policies in place so that children, parents and health workers have adequate rights-based 
guidance on consent, assent and confidentiality. 
• Monitoring and Data Collection: Monitoring is the key tool for mapping the effect of interventions, enabling 
periodic reviews and planning course corrections.  
6.4.	RURAL	HEALTH		
Why in news? 
Rural Health Statistics report 2019-20 was 
released by Ministry of Health and Family 
Welfare 
About the report 
• Rural Health Statistics is an annual 
publication based on the Health 
Facility level data reported by the 
States/UTs. 
• It is an effort towards providing 
reliable and updated information on 
rural, urban and tribal health 
infrastructure, human resources, 
distribution of facilities at the SCs, 
PHCs, CHCs, HWCs etc. so as to provide 
the status of public health 
infrastucture available in the country. 
Read More
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