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

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Progress in Reducing Child Under-Nutrition

Assessing the progress made in reducing under-nutrition among children who are less than two years old in Maharashtra between 2005-06 and 2012, this article points out that child under-nutrition, especially stunting, declined signifi cantly in the state during this period. It holds that this decline can be associated with the interventions initiated through the Rajmata Jijau Mother-Child Health and Nutrition Mission, which began in 2005, and that this indicates the critical role the state can play in reducing child under-nutrition in India.

Women's Paid Work and Well-being in Rajasthan

Does women's participation in paid work lead to their better well-being? This analysis, through a primary survey carried out on the outskirts of Jaipur in Rajasthan, suggests a mixed picture. Participation in paid work is likely to bring some benefits to women but beyond a point the benefits are context-specific - whether women enter the labour force out of sheer survival necessity or due to other reasons. These findings provide neither a neat narrative that paid work is empowering women by providing them with choices and freedom, nor do they convey that paid work is demeaning and devoid of any important benefit. Instead, the findings call for considering a context-specific view of the potential of paid work for women's well-being and underline the significance of public policy in enhancing the well-being of poor women in India.

Adult Undernutrition in India: Is There a Huge Gender Gap?

The prevalence of discrimination against women along with the absence of data led to an assumption that a large gender gap existed in adult undernutrition in India. The availability for the first time of comparable all-India nutritional data for men and women enables us to examine the empirical basis of this belief. The analysis suggests that a huge gender gap in iron deficiency anaemia coexists with an absence of a gender gap in chronic energy deficiency. While gender gap in anaemia is a combined outcome of biological and social factors, the absence of gender gap in ced goes along with a stark socio-economic inequity in India.

Social Infrastructure and Women's Undernutrition

We examine whether access to aspects of social infrastructure, such as toilet facilities, drinking water on the premises and clean cooking fuels, leads to a decline in the incidence of undernutrition among women, which remains quite high in India. The analysis, based on the National Family Health Survey-3 (2005-06) unit-level data, suggests that access to these three aspects of social infrastructure is likely to enhance women's nutrition in India. Of these three aspects, the influence of access to clean cooking fuels remains quite significant. The findings, which assume importance from multiple angles, underline the importance of policies and programmes that ensure access to social infrastructure to the poor, in general, and poor women, in particular.

A Factsheet on Women's Malnutrition in India

This paper analyses levels of women's malnutrition in India over the seven years between 1998-99 and 2005-06, based on the National Family Health Survey. During a period of higher growth and a reasonable pace of reduction in poverty, malnutrition especially iron-deficiency anaemia has increased among women from disadvantaged social and economic groups. The adverse influence of maternal malnutrition extends beyond maternal mortality to causing intrauterine growth retardation, child malnutrition and an increasing prevalence of chronic diseases.
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