Data | Share of women experiencing spousal violence almost doubles in Karnataka in four years

However, indicators pointing to women empowerment record improvement across States in general

In 2019-20, indicators relating to women’s financial independence, empowerment, and rights improved in general across many States. However, some States recorded reversals in specific indicators compared to the levels in 2015-16.

Spousal violence in Karnataka almost doubled between 2015-16 and 2019-20. Also, despite marginal improvement, more than 40% of women continued to marry before turning 18, in West Bengal and Bihar, in 2019-20. Kerala and Himachal Pradesh recorded relatively better figures across many indicators.

Spousal violence

In Karnataka, about 45% of women experienced spousal violence in 2019-20, the highest such share among the States analysed. Spousal violence rose in Assam and Maharashtra. Among the major States, only Kerala and Himachal Pradesh recorded <10% spousal violence.

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Child marriage

In 2019-20, over 40% of women (aged 20-24) had married before turning 18, in Bihar and West Bengal. Most States improved in this indicator compared to 2015-16, except Assam, Manipur, and Tripura. Among the major States, Kerala (6.3%) and Himachal Pradesh (5.4%) had the lowest share of such women.

Also read: Rise in teenage pregnancy, higher anaemia rate in women: NFHS-5 phase data

Bank accounts

In Karnataka, about 89% of women had a bank account in 2019-20, the highest such share among the States analysed. All the States recorded an increase in this indicator compared to 2015-16. Among the major States, <75% of women in Maharashtra & Gujarat had accounts in 2019-20.

Mobile phone usage

In all the States analysed, more % of women owned and used mobile phones in 2019-20 compared to 2015-16. However, only about 50% women in Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, and West Bengal had one. Among the major States, Kerala had the highest such share of women.

Also read: Discouraging numbers: The Hindu Editorial on National Family Health Survey 2019-20

Source: NFHS- 5 | *KA: Karnataka, MH: Maharashtra, GJ: Gujarat, KL: Kerala, NL: Nagaland

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