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Uttarakhand 13th in Gender Vulnerability Index

Uttarakhand is placed 13th out of the 30 states in the first-ever nationwide Gender Vulnerability Index (GVI), ranked behind bigger states like Punjab and Maharashtra

dehradun Updated: Nov 07, 2017 20:11 IST
Neha Pant
Neha Pant
Hindustan Times
Uttarakhand News,Gender Vulnerability Index,gender
The report studied vulnerability status of women across 29 states and Delhi.(Vinay Santosh Kumar/HT Photo)

Uttarakhand is placed 13th out of the 30 states in the first-ever nationwide Gender Vulnerability Index (GVI), ranked behind bigger states like Punjab and Maharashtra.

Goa ranked top and Bihar featured at the lowest in the GVI report released by child development NGO Plan India on November 1, which is based on the states’ respective performance in four key factors concerning women--protection, health, education and poverty.

The report studied vulnerability status of women across 29 states and Delhi.

The aim behind the GVI is to “comprehensively capture and track national efforts on empowering girls and young women,” said Bhagyashri Dengle, executive director at Plan India.

A total of 170 indicators within the four key dimensions were taken into account while compiling the ranks, she said.

While Uttarakhand’s overall performance with GVI of 0.576 is better than the national average of 0.53, bigger states like Kerala, Karnataka, Punjab, Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh have fared better than the hill state.

Even neighbouring Himachal Pradesh has been ranked 6th in the GVI report.

Uttarakhand was ranked among the top 10 states in terms of education for girls and women, but scored the poorest ranking 14th in the poverty index, prompting activists to call for strong measures to improve Uttarakhand’s performance, especially in terms of economic participation of women.

“It’s a matter of concern that Uttarakhand, which is a small state, has lagged behind many bigger states in the survey,” said Dehradun-based activist Kusum Ghildiyal.

“There’s an urgent need to focus on creating livelihood opportunities for women at the grassroots level -- who depend largely on agriculture -- for empowering women economically,” she said, pointing that only 29% women own land or property-- individually or jointly-- in Uttarakhand.

“We also need to ensure that more and more women availed their property rights.”

Rekha Arya, minister of state (independent charge) for women empowerment and child development, said the government will “analyze the report and work on its findings” to ensure that the state performed better in such surveys in future.

India fell by 21 places in the Global Gender Gap Index recently, finishing at the 108th position among 144 nations in the World Economic Forum ranking, mainly owing to lower participation of women in economy and lower wages.

First Published: Nov 07, 2017 20:11 IST