BRIDGE Report 62: India Gender Profile

Author: G. Bhan
Publisher: Institute of Development Studies UK
Publication Date: Aug 2001
This report provides a contemporary overview of gender and development issues in India and identifies areas for further and more detailed study. The report begins by detailing the historical and contemporary gender paradigms in Indian society as it has changed under the rule of the Hindu-right Bharatiya Janta Party (BJP) and recovered from the initial shocks of the New Economic Policy (NEP) of 1991. The effects of the NEP - from the new policies to the changing role of the government - are a major focus of this report, given that they shape much of the reality of modern India. The implications of the NEP on gender issues are then analysed in different sectors: the economy - in particular the effects of the Structural Adjustment Policies and changing trends in employment, growth and wages, health, nutrition, reproduction, HIV/AIDS and education. In each section, trends in the major indicators are described and recent academic interpretations of these trends are cited. The report concludes with policy implications and suggests ways in which the focus areas may move forward in future research.