Thursday, February 16, 2006

There are many shades between Black and White

Economic Review 2005 updates for the State of Kerala

87.86 per cent of women in the state were literate, 33 per cent above the Indian average. Female literacy rate was growing at 1.69 per cent (1991-2001) as against the male literacy growth rate of 0.58 per cent.

Out of 48.42 lakh students enrolled in schools in 2004-05, 49.07 per cent students were girls.

93 per cent deliveries in Kerala took place in hospitals or other healthcare destinations, reflecting the awareness of the population.

9,053 suicide cases were registered in the state during 2004, 27 per cent were those of women.

This reflects a suicide rate of 27 per lakh population, which is three times higher than the national average.

The number of crimes against women in the state since 1991 has increased exponentially with incidents of mistreatment by husbands and relatives increasing alarmingly, even among the educated and literate.

The largest number of 3,222 (41.95 per cent) crimes against women involved cruelty by husbands and relatives, followed by molestation with 2,260 (29.42 per cent) - together making up for 71% of the crimes against women!


silverine said...

Chilling figures MC....

If this happens in a literate state then we need to take a closer look at the causes. Because one would expect such figures from Bihar or UP, but definitely not from Kerala. As someone pointed out empowerment of women would be a solution. But isnt education empowerment? I think the country has to remove its Law books, dust it and rewrite the whole damn thing keeping in mind the rapid changes we have experienced as a society and economy.

injinuity said...

if someone can count to ten and write his/her name then they are deemed literate in kerala...

Mind Curry said...

@ silverine - the huge difference between education and literacy is coming to light now. and also, i feel despite education, status, money and all that stuff people think is the greatest, the most important thing in life is to be refined and polished - thats the stuff that makes us better human beings.

@ injinuity - it is not just in kerala. literacy means something like that everywhere. and that way kerala is definitely on top of the rest of the nation. but we need to go beyond just being literate and shine in all other areas of life. thats what we are trying to build here, rather than look down on what we have achieved - the goals of this blog were often misunderstood by some bloggers.

rocksea said...

hmmm male dominancy is deep rooted in the society and you can still see women with btechs n higher qualifications sitting at home. if a woman has career n source of money of her own, it would be helpful. i see a huge difference between the body language of (and towards) a working lady compared to a non-working lady.

anyways education may not lead to decrease in suicide rate. logically thinking education makes the human mind more complex with more problems. educated n working people are more stressed compared to others. suicide from agriculture failures/debts are another side and to be treated differently.

rocksea said...

and sexual violence we can relate to what we talked in the other blog rt? sexual oppression. education may be a bit of relief but conventional customs n taboos are still deeprooted.. only time will tell,,

Mind Curry said...

@ rocksea - thank you for your brilliant thoughts. i absolutely agree, financial independence through a good education and career is definitely a way of empowerment for women. as you rightly pointed out men dont appreciate that empowerment!

as for suicides, there are many a reasons. but i was talking about the suicides by women, as a result of harassment and abuse by men.

it is about time that someone broke the bubbles of "convention" and "conservativeness" - not because they are bad by themselves, but they are just being used by vested interests to create idiotic customs and taboos. and that someone includes you, me and all of us.

quills said...

Very interesting post. According to an article in National Geographic, Kerala is a bizarre anomaly among developing nations, a place that offers real hope for the future of the Third World. We pride ourselves on being the state with the highest literacy rate among women, a state where female to male ratio is higher, suggesting that there are fewer numbers of selective abortion or female infanticide. However, as the statistics suggest here, our state also holds the notorious distinction of having the highest suicide rates among women and rising cases of atrocities against women and I agree with mindcurry that there is a correlation between the two. I guess what we learn from this is that education and not really, literacy, allows women to make decisions about their own lives to some extent. However, in Kerala there also needs to be a radical change in the mindset of society (particularly men and even some women who are willing to accept this as their fate) for women to break free from the invisible shackles of social and cultural mores that bind them. Perhaps, what we need, and blogs like this are on the right path, are awareness campaigns for overturning unhealthy and sexist viewpoints and hopefully we will begin to see a positive change soon.

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