- freely available
Economies 2019, 7(3), 75; https://doi.org/10.3390/economies7030075
2. Gender Discrimination in Punjab
3. Data Sources
5. Key Findings
5.1. Gender Bias in Breastfeeding Practices
5.2. Gender Bias in Food Allocation
5.3. Efficacy of Cash Transfer Schemes in Bringing about Better Nutritional Outcomes among Girl Children
6. Conclusions and Policy Recommendations
Conflicts of Interest
- Alderman, Harold, John Hoddinott, and Bill Kingsey. 2006. Long term consequences of Early Child Malnutrition. Oxford Economic Papers 58: 450–74. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Arokiasamy, Perianayagam. 2002. Gender preference, contraceptive use and fertility in India: Regional and development influences. International Journal of Population Geography 8: 49–67. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Arokiasamy, Perianayagam. 2003. Gender Preferences in Contraceptive use and fertility: Regional and Development Influences. International Journal of Population Geography 23: 66–75. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Asfaw, Abay, Stephan Klassen, and Francesca Lamanna. 2007. Intra Household Disparities in Children’s Medical Care before Death in India. IZA Discussion Papers No. 2586-2007. Available online: http://ftp.iza.org/dp2586.pdf (accessed on 12 February 2015).
- Basu, Alaka M. 1989. Is discrimination in food really necessary for explaining sex differentials in childhood mortality? Population Study 43: 193–210. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Bhutta, Zulfiqar A., Tahmeed Ahmed, Robert E. Black, Simon Cousens, and Kathryn Dewey. 2008. What works? Intervention for Child and Maternal Survival. The Lancet 371: 417–40. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Bloch, Francis, Vijayendra Rao, and Sonalde Desai. 2004. Wedding celebrations as conspicuous consumption: Signalling social status in rural India. Journal of Human Resources 39: 675–95. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Bose, Ashish. 2007. Female Foeticide: A Civilizational Collapse. In Sex Selective Abortions in India: Gender Society and New Reproductive Technologies. Edited by T. Patel. New Delhi: Sage Publications. [Google Scholar]
- Census of India. 2001. General Population Tables and Primary Census Abstracts; Punjab Part 2A and Part 2 B. Series 12; New Delhi: Government of India.
- Census of India. 2011. General Population Tables and Primary Census Abstracts; Punjab Part 2A and Part 2 B. Series 17; New Delhi: Government of India.
- Chaturvedi, Sanjay, Umesh M. Kapil, Nikesh Gnanasekaran, Harshpal S. Sachdev, Ravinder M. Pandey, and T. Bhanti. 1996. Nutrient intake amongst adolescent girls belonging to poor socioeconomic group of rural area of Rajasthan. Indian Pediatrics 33: 197–201. [Google Scholar]
- Coale, Ansley J. 1991. Excess Female Mortality and the Balance of the Sexes in the Population: An Estimate of the Number of Missing Females. Population and Development Review 17: 517–23. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Cowan, Betty, and Jasbir Dhanoa. 1983. The Prevention of Toddler Malnutrition by Home based Nutrition Education. In Nutrition in the Community: A Critical Look at Nutrition Policy and Programme. Edited by D. McLaren. New York: DS Mclern. [Google Scholar]
- D’Souza, Stan. 2005. Sex differentials in mortality in early childhood. Population and Development Review 6: 257–70. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Dasgupta, Monica. 1987. Selective Discrimination against Female Children in Rural Punjab, India. Population and Development Review 13: 77–100. [Google Scholar]
- Dasgupta, Monica, Woojin Chung, and Li Shuzhuo. 2009. Is There an Incipient Turnaround in Asia’s “Missing Girls” Phenomenon? In World Bank Policy Research Working Paper. Washington, DC: World Bank Publications, p. 4846. [Google Scholar]
- Deaton, Angus. 2003. Health, Inequality, and Economic Development. Journal of Economic Literature 41: 113–58. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Duflo, Esther. 2003. Grandmothers and Granddaughters: Old age pensions and intra-household Allocation in South Africa. World Bank Economic Review 17: 1–25. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Duflo, Esther. 2005. Why Policy Reservations? Journal of Economic Perspectives 20: 112–34. [Google Scholar]
- Fledderjohann, Jasmine, Sutapa Agrawal, Sukumar Vellakkal, Sanjay Basu, Oona Campbell, Pat Doyle, Shah Ebrahim, and David Stucker. 2014. Do Girls Have a Nutritional Disadvantage Compared with Boys? Statistical Models of Breastfeeding and Food Consumption Inequalities among Indian Siblings. PLoS ONE 9: 17–24. [Google Scholar]
- Habicht, Jean P., Julie Da Vanzo, and William P. Butz. 1986. Does breastfeeding really save lives, or are apparent benefits due to biases? American Journal of Epidermology 123: 279–90. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Haddad, Lawrence, Harold Alderman, Simon Appleton, Lina Song, and Yisehac Yohannes. 2003. Reducing Child Malnutrition: How far does income growth take us? World Bank Economic Review 17: 107–31. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Hill, Kenneth, and Dawn M. Upchurch. 1995. Gender differences in Child Health: Evidence from the Demographic and Health Surveys. Population and Development Review 21: 127–51. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Huffman, Sandra L., and Barbara B. Lamphere. 1984. Breastfeeding performance and child survival. Population and Development Review 10: 93–116. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Jamison, Dean T., Lawrence H. Summers, George Alleyne, Kenneth. J. Arrow, and Seth Berkley. 2013. Global health 2035: A world converging within a generation. The Lancet 38: 1898–955. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Jayachandra, Seema, and Ilyana Kuziemko. 2010. Why do mothers breastfeed girls less than boys? Evidence and Implication for Child Health in India. The Quarterly Journal of Economics 126: 1485–538. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- John, Mary E., Ravinder Kaur, Rajni Palriwala, Saraswati Raju, and Alpana Sagar. 2008. Planning Families, Planning Gender: The Adverse Child Sex Ratios in Selected districts of Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh. New Delhi: Books for Change. [Google Scholar]
- Kaur, Mallika. 2010. The Paradox of India’s Breadbasket: Farmer Suicides in Punjab. PRAXIS The Fletcher Journal of Human Security 25: 39–57. [Google Scholar]
- Kaur, Ravinder. 2013. Mapping the adverse consequences of Sex Selection and Gender Imbalance in India and China. Economic and Political Weekly 48: 13–26. [Google Scholar]
- Kynch, Jocelyn, and Amartya Sen. 1983. Indian women: Well being and survival. Cambridge Journal of Economics 7: 363–80. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
- Levinson, James, Sucheta Mehra, Dorothy Lewis, Anita Kumari, Guy Koope, Brian Bence, and Astier M. Alemdom. 2003. Nutritional Well Being and Gender Differences: After 30 years of Rapid Growth in Rural Punjab. Economic and Political Weekly 38: 45–60. [Google Scholar]
- Makinson, Carolyn. 1994. Discrimination against the female child. International Journal of Gynaecology & Obstetrics 46: 119–25. [Google Scholar]
- Maluccio, John A., and Rafael Flores. 2004. Impact Evaluation of a Conditional Cash Transfer Program: The Nicaraguan Red de Protection Social. Washington, DC: International Food Policy Research Institute. [Google Scholar]
- Marcoux, Alain. 2002. Sex Differentials in Undernutrition: A Look at Survey Evidence. Population and Development Review 28: 275–84. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Miller, Barbara D. 1981. The Endangered Sex: Neglect of Female Child in Rural North India. Itahaca: Cornell University Press. [Google Scholar]
- Mishra, Vinod. 2004. Sex Differentials in Childhood Feeding, Healthcare and Nutrition in India. Population and Development Review 30: 269–95. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- NFHS-3. 2005–06. National Family Health Survey. Mumbai: Ministry of Health and Family Welfare Government of India. [Google Scholar]
- NFHS-4. 2015–16. National Family Health Survey. Mumbai: Ministry of Health and Family Welfare Government of India. [Google Scholar]
- Pandey, Aparna, Priya G. Sengupta, Sabuz K. Mondal, Dhirendra N. Gupta, Byomkesh Manna, Subrata Ghosh, Dipika Sur, and Sujit K. Bhattacharya. 2002. Gender differences in healthcare-seeking during common illnesses in a rural community of West Bengal, India. Journal of Health, Population and Nutrition 20: 306–11. [Google Scholar]
- Patel, Tulsi. 2007. Sex Selective Abortion in India: Gender, Society and New Reproductive Technologies. New Delhi: Sage Publications. [Google Scholar]
- Paxson, Christina, and Norbert Schady. 2010. Does Money Matter? The Effect of Cash Transfers on Child Health and Development in Rural Ecuador. Economic Development and Cultural Change 59: 187–229. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Purewal, Navtej K. 2010. Son Preference: Sex Selection, Gender and Culture in South Asia. London: Bloomsbury Publications. [Google Scholar]
- Robitaille, Marie C. 2012. Determinants of Stated Son Preference in India: Are Men and Women Different? Journal of Developing Societies 49: 1–13. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Rosenzweig, Mark, and Paul Schultz. 1982. Market Opportunities, Genetic Endowments, and Intrafamily Resource Distribution: Child survival in Rural India. The American Economic Review 72: 803–15. [Google Scholar]
- Sen, Amartya. 1990. Inequalities, Women and World Development. New York: Oxford University Press. [Google Scholar]
- Sen, Amartya. 2001. Many Faces of Gender Inequality. Frontline 18. Available online: http://www.frontline.in/static/html/fl1822/18220040.htm (accessed on 3 July 2016). [Google Scholar]
- Sharma, Kalpa. 2014. Will India Achieve Millennium Development Goals 4 and 5? In Regional Disparities and Social Development: Perspectives and Issues. New Delhi: Serials Publications. [Google Scholar]
- Shrinivasan, Rukmini. 2012. India Deadliest Place in the World for the Girl Child. Times of India. Available online: https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/India-deadliest-place-in-world-for-girl-child/articleshow/11707102.cms (accessed on 14 February 2019).
- Singh, Nadia. 2017. Sustainability Crisis: A Critical Evaluation of Green Energy Policies. Economic and Political Weekly 52: 66–69. [Google Scholar]
- Singh, Sukhpal. 2000. Crisis in Punjab Agriculture. Economic and Political Weekly 35: 1889–92. [Google Scholar]
- Singh, Pritam, and Nadia Singh. 2015. The Lesser Child: A Study of Inter-linkages between Child Sex Ratios and Discrimination against the Girl Child in Punjab. Journal of Punjab Studies 22: 287–317. [Google Scholar]
- Singh, Pritam, and Nadia Singh. 2017. Confronting gender discrimination in Punjab: Evaluating cash transfer schemes. Economic and Political Weekly 52: 24–26. [Google Scholar]
- Sommerfelt, Elizabeth A., and Fred Arnold. 1998. Sex differentials in nutritional status of young children. In Too Young to Die: Genes or Gender? New York: Population Division, United Nations, pp. 133–53. [Google Scholar]
- Tiwari, Abhay Kumar. 2013. Gender Inequality in terms of health and nutrition in India: Evidence from NFHS-3. Pacific Business Review International 5: 24–34. [Google Scholar]
- Ueyuma, Mika. 2007. Income Growth and Gender Bias in Childhood Mortality in Developing Countries. IFPRI Discussion Paper 00735. Washington, DC: IFPRI. [Google Scholar]
- UNICEF. 2011. Strong Foundations: Early childhood care and education. In EFA Global Monitoring Report. Paris: UNICEF. [Google Scholar]
- UNFPA. 2014. Sex Ratios and Gender Biased Sex Selection: History, Debates and Future Directions. Mumbai: International Institute of Population Science and UNFPA. [Google Scholar]
- Young Lives. 2012. What Inequality Means for Children: Evidence from Young Lives. Oxford: Oxford University. [Google Scholar]
- WHO. 2003. Global Strategy for Infant and Young Child Feeding. Geneva: World Health Organization. [Google Scholar]
- Zimmerman, Laura. 2011. Reconsidering Gender Bias in Intra Household Allocation in India. IZA Discussion Paper No. 5687. Available online: http://ftp.iza.org/dp5687.pdf (accessed on 12 March 2015).
Sen’s methodology was later refined by Coale (1991). He argued that Sen had compared the sex ratios in Asian countries with those of the developed nations of Europe and North America. However, Coale considered this unfair as these regions had very high sex ratios as a result of high levels of male mortality in the past wars. Coale refined Sen’s calculations and concluded that the number of “missing women” is 60 million and not 100 million as suggested by Sen (Coale 1991, p. 522).
The GDI measures the gender gaps in human development achievements by accounting for disparities between women and men in three dimensions: health, knowledge and living standards.
UNFPA stands for United Nations Population Fund.
Calculations have been made by the author on the basis of National Sample Survey Organisation Employment/Unemployment Data (1979–1980).
Kynch and Sen (1983) in a study based on admissions data from two large public hospitals in Mumbai, found it very striking that there was clear evidence that the admitted girls were typically more ill than boys, suggesting the inference that a girl has to be more stricken before she is taken to the hospital (see also Sen 2001).
Health status is estimated on the basis of prevalence of anaemia in the last 12 months.
We adopted the standard NFHS classification and categorized households as deprived households, middle-income households and higher income households.
Fertility rate in Punjab (1.6) is below the replacement ratio of 2.1 children born per women (NFHS-4 2015–16).
Culturally, it is considered inauspicious to accept gifts and financial aid from daughters in India.
|Variable||Mean Value||St. Dev||Mean||St Dev|
|Child’s age (months)||25.2||16.24||26.3||17.18|
|Mother’s age (years)||24.9||3.1||23.5||4.09|
|Wealth Index of Household||-||-||-||-|
|Variable||OR||95% CI||OR||95% CI||OR||95% CI|
|Female||1.11||[0.97 to 1.22]||1.04||[0.92 to 1.10]||−0.45 **||[−0.75 to 0.15]|
|Age of the Child||1||[1.00 to 1.01]||1.03 **||[1.03 to 1.03]||0.23 **||[0.23 to 0.25]|
|Mother’s age||1.03||[1.02 to 1.04]||1.01||[0.99 to 1.02]||0.01||[0.06 to 0.03]|
|Mother’s highest Level of Education||1.83 *||[1.56 to 2.15]||1.6||[1.43 to 1.77]||−0.82 **||[0.36 to 1.00]|
|Deprived Household||1.08||[0.98 to 1.09]||1.05||[0.95 to 1.17]||0.98||[1.43 to 0.18]|
|Mother’s ID (fixed effects)||1 ***||[1.00 to 1.00]||1||[1.00 to 1.00]||1 ***||[1.000 to 1.00]|
|Food Item||OR||95% CI|
|Fresh Milk||0.84 ***||[0.75 to 0.92]|
|Chicken, duck and any other poultry products||0.78 **||[0.70 to 0.90]|
|Any other meat||0.99||[0.87 to 1.22]|
|Lentils||1.02||[0.88 to 1.15]|
|Nuts||0.99||[0.64 to 1.25]|
|Eggs||0.86 **||[0.78 to 0.94]|
|Fish||0.87||[0.80 to 1.12]|
|Cheese, yoghurt and other dairy products||0.96||[0.90 to 1.17]|
|Porridge||1.07||[0.98 to 1.24]|
|Roti, bread, noodles, biscuits and other grains||0.86||[0.77 to 1.13]|
|Potato, cassava and other vegetables made from roots||0.98||[0.91 to 1.12]|
|Pumpkin, carrot and squash||1.03||[0.93 to 1.15]|
|Dark green leafy vegetables||0.96||[0.87 to 1.12]|
|Mango, papaya and jackfruit||0.99||[0.89 to 1.10]|
|Other fruits and vegetables||0.96||[0.84 to 1.10]|
|Oil, fat and butter||0.95||[0.85 to 1.11]|
|Other solid/semi-solid foods||1.05||[0.91 to 1.12]|
|Variable||Weight-for-Age z-Score||Weight-for-Height z-Score||Height-for-Age z-Score|
|Beneficiary of cash transfer scheme||0.0132 (0.001)||0.0032||0.053|
|Child Specific Characteristics|
|Age of the Child||0.02||0.039||0.024 (0.029)|
|Health Status of the Child||−0.232 **||−0.181||−0.085|
|Parent Specific Characteristics|
|Highest Years of Schooling (Mother)||0.20 *||0.29 **||0.018 **|
|Highest Year of Schooling (Father)||0.45||0.76||0.21|
|Wealth Index||0.47 **||0.93||0.63 **|
|Number of Children in the household||−0.85||−0.73||−0.13 (0.029)|
|Whether burning biomass at home||−0.42 **||−0.26||−0.35 *|
|Source: Unit Record data of NFHS-4 (2015–16)|
© 2019 by the author. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).