1 Ministry of Health and Family WelfareGovernment of IndiaGender Equality andWomen s Empowerment in IndiaNational Family HealthSurvey (NFHS-3)India2005-06 International Institute for Population SciencesDeonar, Mumbai 400 088 NATIONAL FAMILY HEALTH SURVEY (NFHS-3) India 2005-06 Gender Equality AND WOMEN S Empowerment IN India Sunita Kishor Kamla Gupta August 2009 Acknowledgement: We gratefully acknowledge the following persons for helping to make this report complete and possible in a very short period of time.
2 We are particularly grateful to Hilary M. Schwandt and Noureddine Abderrahim who assisted with the data analysis; Hannah C. Guedenet who helped convert data into figures and tables; and Kiran Agrahari and Vaidehi Yelmanchili who created maps and assisted with the integration of text, tables, and figures. We also wish to thank all reviewers who read drafts of the report and provided many useful comments. Suggested citation: Sunita Kishor and Kamla Gupta. 2009. Gender Equality and Women s Empowerment in India .
3 National Family Health Survey (NFHS-3), India , 2005-06. Mumbai: International Institute for Population Sciences; Calverton, Maryland, USA: ICF Macro. For additional information about the 2005-06 National Family Health Survey (NFHS-3), please contact: International Institute for Population Sciences (IIPS), Govandi Station Road, Deonar, Mumbai - 400 088 Telephone: 022-2556-4883, 022-2558-3778 Fax: 022-2558-3778 E-mail: Website: For related information, visit or Page About NFHS-3.
4 1 Chapter 1 Introduction .. 3 Chapter 2 Son Preference: Sex Ratios and Related Indicators .. 7 Sex Ratios at Birth .. 9 Sex Ratios at Birth of Last Births .. 14 Sex Differentials in Mortality .. 16 Chapter 3 Gender Differences in 19 School Attendance of Children Age 6-17 Years: Levels and Differentials .. 20 Gender Differentials in Adult Literacy .. 25 Educational Attainment among Adults: Levels and Trends .. 26 Chapter 4 Marriage and Spousal Age Differentials .. 33 Age at Marriage .. 34 Spousal Age Difference.
5 38 Chapter 5 Employment .. 45 Women s and Men s Employment Status .. 46 Women s Employment by Type of Employment .. 50 Women s Occupational Distribution .. 50 Trends in Employment for Ever-Married 51 Chapter 6 Female Household Headship .. 55 Female Household Headship: Levels and Trends .. 56 Age and Educational Profile of Female and Male Household Heads .. 56 Wealth Profile of Households by Sex of Household Head .. 57 Female Household Headship by State .. 57 Trend in the Age and Educational Profile of Female Household Heads.
6 58 Chapter 7 Access to Resources .. 61 Sex Ratios by Age and Wealth Quintile .. 62 Access to Media .. 63 CONTENTS Access to Spaces Outside the Home .. 63 Access to Health Care .. 64 Access to Money that Women Can Decide How To Use .. 65 Access to a Bank or Savings Account that Women Themselves Use .. 66 Chapter 8 Gender Relations: Norms and Attitudes .. 71 Men s Attitudes Regarding Gender Roles in Household Decisionmaking .. 72 Acceptance of Norms about Men s Right to Beat Their Wives .. 74 Acceptance of Norms about Women s Refusal of Sex.
7 78 Chapter 9 Married Women and Decisionmaking .. 83 Decisions about Use of Own Earnings .. 84 Decisions about Use of Spouses Earnings .. 86 Women s Earnings Relative to Their Husbands Earnings .. 87 Women s Participation in Specific Household Decisions .. 89 Chapter 10 Spousal violence .. 95 Level of Spousal violence against Wives .. 96 Experience of Specific Acts of violence .. 96 Spousal violence by Marital Duration .. 98 Spousal violence and Injuries .. 99 Spousal violence and Indicators of Women s Empowerment .
8 100 Spousal violence and Intergenerational Effects .. 102 Net Determinants of the Experience of Spousal violence .. 103 Chapter 11 Gender , Empowerment , and Selected Health, Nutrition, and Demographic Outcomes .. 111 Gender Differentials in Children s Full Immunization .. 112 Women s Empowerment and Children s Full Immunization .. 112 Gender Differentials in Children s Likelihood of Being Underweight .. 115 Gender Differentials in the Likelihood of Adults Being Too Thin .. 116 Women s Empowerment and Current Contraceptive Use.
9 120 Chapter 12 Conclusions .. 125 131 ABOUT NFHS-3 The 2005-06 National Family Health Survey (NFHS-3) is the third in the NFHS series of surveys. The first NFHS was conducted in 1992-93 and the second (NFHS-2) was conducted in 1998-99. All three NFHS surveys were conducted under the stewardship of the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MOHFW), Government of India . The MOHFW designated the International Institute for Population Sciences (IIPS), Mumbai, as the nodal agency for the surveys.
10 Funding for NFHS-3 was provided by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), the United Kingdom Department for International Development (DFID), the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, UNICEF, UNFPA, and the Government of India . Technical assistance for NFHS-3 was provided by ICF Macro, Calverton, Maryland, USA. Assistance for the HIV component of the survey was provided by the National AIDS Control Organization (NACO) and the National AIDS Research Institute (NARI), Pune.