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Closing the gender gap

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gender gap | Business Standard Editorial Comment

Business Standard Editorial Comment  |  Mumbai 



India’s five-rank improvement on the World Economic Forum’s latest Global Index detracts from the fact that its performance on gender equality remains among the worst in the world. At rank 135 out of 146 countries against 140 out of 156 countries in 2021, it ranks above only 11 countries which included states such as Afghanistan, Pakistan, Congo, Iran, and Chad. India does not fare much better when the sample is narrowed to 19 East Asian states, few of which enjoy top 50 rankings in the first place. Here, the country weighs in at rank 17, ahead only of Pakistan and Afghanistan. It’s not just the traditional Asian Tigers — Singapore (49), Thailand (79), Indonesia (92), Malaysia (98), and South Korea (99) — and China (102) that outperform India. Countries that would qualify as medium-size states in India fare way better too — Laos (53), Bangladesh (71), and Vietnam (83) appear to have more equal societies. And this, when India’s overall score has improved from 0.625 in 2021 (with zero being the worst and 1 the best) to 0.629, its seventh-highest score since the index was first compiled in 2006.

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First Published: Thu, July 14 2022. 23:07 IST

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