Current Status of Global Gender Parity

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Current Status of Global Gender Parity

Source: The post current status of global gender parity has been created, based on the article “Two steps back: India needs to close the gender gap in education and politics” published in “The Hindu” on 17th June 2024 

UPSC Syllabus Topic: GS Paper 1- society 

Context: The article highlights the slow progress in closing the global gender gap, emphasizing that it will take 134 years to reach full parity. It discusses India’s slip in ranking, challenges in education and political empowerment, and the need for stronger measures to bridge gender gaps. Current Status of Global Gender Parity

What is the Current Status of Global Gender Parity? 

The world has only closed 68.5% of the gender gap as of 2024. Progress is slow, with only a 0.1% improvement from the previous year. This slow pace suggests it could take 134 years to achieve full gender equality. Iceland is the best-performing country, having closed over 90% of its gender gap. 

How is India Performing?

1. India’s ranking in gender parity has fallen, now at 129 out of 146 countries. The country has closed 64.1% of its gender gap. 

2. Educational Disparities: There is a significant gender gap in literacy rates between men and women, with a difference of 17.2 percentage points.

3. Political Underrepresentation: Despite a high number of female candidates (close to 800), women’s representation in Parliament has decreased to 13.6%, with only 74 women elected out of 543 members.

4.Economic Participation: While there has been a slight improvement in economic participation, India still needs to increase this by 6.2 percentage points to reach its 2012 levels. 

What should be done?

1. Ensure girls complete higher education and provide job skills training to boost labor force participation, where the gender gap is 45.9%.

2. Implement the Women’s Reservation Bill, 2023, to reserve one-third of seats in Parliament and State Assemblies for women.

3. Promote policies that ensure safety at work and help women maintain jobs after marriage by encouraging shared domestic responsibilities.

Question for practice: 

Discuss the current challenges India faces in achieving gender parity based on its global ranking, educational disparities, political representation, and economic participation. 

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