ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Morbidities of Alcohol

The article by Dakshita Das (“Gender Issues for the Fourteenth Finance Commission”, EPW, 21 December 2013) draws attention to some of the devastating social consequences of the use of the tax on liquor as a means to generate large revenues for the State. Thus, in Tamil Nadu, the widespread...

Sixth Pay Commission: Class and Gender Bias

The Sixth Pay Commission has recommended a liberal increase in maternity and childcare facilities - a welcome move. It has however specified only women, thus making childcare the mother's responsibility alone. Even the present entitlements are implemented only in the government and public sector, largely ignored in the private sector and not available at all to a majority of women in the unorganised sector though some states have made attempts to cover the latter. The central government has also ignored the National Labour Commission (2002) report that emphasises the State's share in providing maternity entitlements in different sectors rather than making it the employer's liability alone.

Gender and Agricultural Workers

the politics of mega-identity. If we consider the caste-based and material interests being served/pursued by the politics of mega- identity then the seriousness of this issue does not need to be overemphasised.

A Miracle Really, but Not Divine

the decision-making process. But other studies, from Maharashtra and Karnataka, give a different picture. The National Perspective Planning for women had envisaged the insensitivily of the male bureaucrats to the gender issue and recommended that 50 per cent of all grass roots functionaries must he women. The Perspective Plan also recommended relaxation of the educational qualification for women along with a short training course for them Under the present set up, all developmental schemes and allocations of funds for women's welfare are routed through collectors, BDOs and other officials. What is more, the developmental schemes have a household approach with the unit equated with its head who of ten happens to be a male. Hence, the women of the household get neglected.

Breast-Feeding and Working Mothers

Breast-Feeding and Working Mothers Mina Swaminathan ARUN GUPTA and Jon R Rohde's article 'Economic Value of Breast-Feeding in In- dia', EPW June 26 'is a commendable attempt to lift the discussion about breastfeeding into the macro-economic sphere by attempting to quantify some of the critical parameters. Undoubtedly this is a good way to create awareness about the importance of breast-feeding for the welfare of children and hence for the economy in general among social scientists and policy planners accustomed to thinking along macro-economic lines. As a dramatic device to focus attention on this issue, it evokes ungrudging respect from those of us in the 'soft' disciplines who often seem to have trouble in being heard. However, the authors appear to be working from a limited perspective and have failed to attend to certain crucial social dimensions of the problem. As a result, they tend to draw simplistic conclusions, trivialise some issues and take a fragmented, uni-dimensional view which may do little to promote the very cause they seek to serve.

Breast-Feeding and Working Mothers-Laws and Policies on Maternity and Child Care

Laws and policies which attempt to promote breast-feeding merely by placing restrictions on artificial feeding without simultaneously providing positive social support measures may be damaging to children besides being unfair and unjust to women. A radical change in perspective is needed which recognises that a woman's reproductive role is a form of 'social production" which needs social support.

Child Care Services in Tamil Nadu

Mina Swaminathan While the network of child care services in Tamil Nadu is impressive, there are two shortcomings
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