Gender Discrimination in India

Gender discrimination continues to be an enormous problem within Indian society. Traditional patriarchal norms have relegated women to secondary status within the household and workplace. This drastically affects women's health, financial status, education, and political involvement. Women are commonly married young, quickly become mothers, and are then burdened by stringent domestic and financial responsibilities. They are frequently malnourished since women typically are the last member of a household to eat and the last to receive medical attention. (From Foundation for Sustainable Development)

Recent Quotes by Prominent People in India

  • From Prime Minister Modi: "It is our responsibility to wake up the society and to realise our responsibility. It is due to family and societal pressure that girls are killed in the womb. He also pointed out how, in some places, girl child was drowned at times in milk. This used to happen after their birth and after they had seen the face of their mother. But we are worse, we kill girls in the womb.” He said “beta-beti ek samman” (equal treatment of boys and girls) should be our motto. “Have we ever imagined that if present gender imbalance continued, then what would be the repercussion? For every 1,000 boys, 1,000 girls should be born. See Mahendergarh and Jhajjar districts where there are just about 775 girls for 1,000 boys and so about 225 boys would remain unmarried. If daughters are not born, where will you get your daughters-in-law from? We want educated daughters-in-law, but think so many times before educating our daughters. Educating our daughters is also our responsibility,” the Prime Minister said.

  • Female foeticide and infanticide are not the only issues with a girl child in India. At every stage of life right from basic nutrition to education and standard of living she is discriminated and neglected. (Interactive Seminar on World Girl Child Day at on 24 September 2011, organised by CII Bihar State Council)

  • A much-cited 2002 study,“A Surplus of Men, a Deficit of Peace,” by Valerie M. Hudson and Andrea den Boer, contends that a gender imbalance in Asian countries, caused by a shortage of marriageable women, results in higher rates of crime, including rape, committed by young unmarried men...
    Right now, the statistics are worrying. India has 37 million more men than women, as of 2011 census data, and about 17 million excess men in the age group that commits most crimes, up from 7 million in 1991.
    Violent crime in India rose nearly 19 percent from 2007 to 2011, while the kidnapping of women (much of which is related to forced marriage) increased 74 percent in that time. That’s a marked increase from the five years before 2007, when violent crime actually fell by 2.8 percent, and the kidnapping of women rose by 41 percent.
    If the study’s conclusions are correct, India’s problems with rape and other forms of violence against women – recently seen in the gang rape and subsequent death of a 23-year-old woman on a bus in Delhi, the gang rape of a high school student in Bihar state and the rape of a young woman in Punjab, who committed suicide afterward– may only get worse, given the trend in India’s demographics.

  • What the Supreme Court has to say:
    On Nov 2nd 2010 The Supreme Court stated that "Indian society has become sick." “The hallmark of a healthy society is the respect it shows to women. Indian society has become a sick society.  This is evident from the large number of cases coming up in this court and also in almost all courts in the country in which young women are being killed by their husbands,” an anguished Bench of Justices Markandey Katju and Gyan Sudha Mishra said in a recent judgment. “What is the level of civilization of a society in which a large number of women are treated in this horrendous and barbaric manner? What has our society become?” The bench had a point. Data compiled for 2008 by National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) showed that there were 8,172 dowry deaths in the country . (RPI comment: The actual statistics are probably much higher as many deaths go unreported or are reported as suicides.) Read more: The Times of India