Gender bias Current Affairs - 2019

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Gender bias caused excess deaths of girls under 5: Study

According to recent study of Lancet Global Health, there have been 2,39,000 excess deaths per year of girls under age of five in India due to gender bias. Excess mortality is difference between observed and expected mortality rates in both genders.

Key Findings of Study

The excess mortality accounted for about 2.4 million deaths in decade of study period 2005-2015. The additional deaths were found in 90% of districts in the country. 29 out of 35 States and Union Territories in the country contributed to this mortality.

The average level of excess mortality in girls aged 0-4 in study period of 2000-2005 was 18.5 per 1,000 live births, compared to expected mortality of girl children aged under 5 in areas of world without known gender discrimination.

Four largest states in northern India, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Rajasthan, and Madhya Pradesh, accounted for two thirds of the total excess deaths of females under five. In Uttar Pradesh, excess female mortality was calculated at 30.5. In Bihar it was 28.5, in Rajasthan it was 25.4, and in Madhya Pradesh it was 22.1.

The worst affected areas in India were all rural, agricultural areas with lower levels of education, high population densities, low socio-economic development and high levels of fertility. Many deaths of females under five were partly due to unwanted child bearing and subsequent neglect.

#IamThatWoman: WCD Ministry launches campaign on women for women

The Union Ministry of Women and Child Development (WCD) has launched online campaign #IamThatWoman in an attempt to end Gender bias in women against women. It was launched by WCD Minister Meneka Gandhi.

Significance of this campaign

Through the campaign, Ministry seeks to highlight various aspects of women standing ‘by’ and ‘for’ women. It also aims to shed light on the enormous contributions made by women for women. Under this campaign, Twitter and Facebook users have been encouraged to tag and share stories of women helping women with photograph and post online with the hashtag #IamThatWoman. Ministry of WCD also has urged people to shun stereotypes associated with women harming other women.