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

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Jammu and Kashmir’s Open Defecation Free Status

The erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir, now the union territory of J&K, attained 100% open defecation free status in September 2018, well before the Swachh Bharat Mission (Grameen) deadline of 2 October 2019. However, the movement of women in flocks to fields as it gets dark portrays quite a different picture. Do the so-called individual household latrines exist only on paper, while being incomplete and non-functional in reality? Are these not being used due to cultural barriers and socialisation? What policy steps are needed to effect change in rural sanitation behaviour? To answer these questions and suggest a way forward, a micro-study was carried out in Bishnah block of Jammu district.

Women in the Puranas

Women and the Puranic Tradition in India by Monika Saxena, Oxon and New York: Routledge, 2019; pp xvii + 288, ₹1,495.

Gamechanger or a Trojan Horse?

The Maternity Benefit Act, 1961, a key legislation in India that enables women to transcend the public–private dichotomy and stake their claim for productive participation in the labour force, saw major amendments in 2017. Four aspects of the amendments—increased maternity leave, maternity leave for adoption and surrogacy, provision of crèche, and paternity leave—are juxtaposed with feminist and constitutional principles as well as ground-level realities and practices. An increase in maternity benefits in law with a neglect of paternity leave and benefits is a lopsided approach that further reinforces gendered division of labour and care work as the domain of women. The social responsibility of employers is emphasised, and a deeper engagement of the state with the policy of parental benefits is advocated.

Women’s Education and Fertility in the Hindi Heartland

Using evidences from the Sample Registration System and the third and fourth rounds of the National Family Health Survey, this article shows that the fertility rate continues to be high in the Hindi heartland of the country, and that too among educated women. It also proposes some plausible hypotheses in this regard, which would require validation through further research.

Interpretations and Implications of Increasing Obesity in India

The National Family Health Survey-3 and 4 data show that in the past 10 years, overweight/obesity among women in terms of Body Mass Index has increased quite sharply. In the Indian context, undernutrition and obesity are not separate problems. A large proportion of overweight/obese women are undernourished, with small stature, food transition towards more fats and increasingly sedentary lifestyles making them vulnerable towards being overweight/obese. More diversified diet reduces the risk of overweight/obesity. It is suggested that adequate and good quality diversified diets need to be ensured for comprehensive energy and nutrient adequacy. This requires an overhaul of India’s food programmes.

Despite Unionisation, Why Are Tea Workers Exploited?

Profits made by large tea corporations continue to increase at the expense of tea workers who are paid unfairly, and whose access to quality education, water, and other basic services is severely curtailed.

Do Self-Help Groups Transform the Lives of Poor Women? A Reading List

While self-help groups are seen as vital to successful anti-poverty policies , they have failed to develop the collective bargaining power of women and comprehensively incorporate the demands made by beneficiaries.

Seven Kinds of Deprivation That Women Face Everyday

Patriarchal structures have ensured that women’s access to resources, health, education, and political representation among other things, have remained heavily unequal.

What Survivors of Domestic Violence Need from Their New Government

This article discusses the problems with the current domestic violence act and discusses what a new government can do to alleviate the sufferings of a large section of women who are struggling to enforce court orders.

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