This panel examines examples of persistent gender inequalities as well as data that shows positive change in addressing these in some domains in South Asia. The smaller countries such as Bangladesh and Nepal have made notable progress while India despite its economic dominance in the region remains well behind in bridging the gender gaps.
The Global Gender Gap Report (2016) indicated that at the current rate of progress it could take up the full millennium to achieve gender equality in South Asia. Within South Asia though there are examples of good progress versus endemic gender disparity. While India emerges as the third largest economy in the world, its record in women’s representation in legislature and workforce participation remains dismal. With just 12.2 percent of parliamentary seats held by women and just 27 percent female labour participation, the country fares worse than Afghanistan and Bangladesh. Nepal too has made notable progress in recent years. The papers in this panel examine different social and economic dimensions of gender inequality. These range from education, income, caste, foeticide and alcoholism.