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Women head 23 million rural households

Of these, more than half depend on casual, manual labour, marginally higher than 51% of men-headed households

Abheet Singh Sethi | IndiaSpend  |  Bengaluru 

Women pick jasmine blossoms from the fields
Women pick jasmine blossoms from the fields

There are nearly 23 million households headed by women in rural India, according to data released by the Socio-Economic and Caste Census 2011, higher than the census count of 17 million.

Of the 23 million, more than half (53%) depend on casual, manual labour, marginally higher than 51% of men-headed households. Put together, these figures indicate the extent of distress in rural areas.

Up to 24% of households headed by women are farmers (IndiaSpend and Khabar Lahariya had explored their lives here) as against 31% of households headed by men.

 

Source: Socio-Economic and Caste Census

 

Number of Rural Households (left) and % of Women-headed Households (right)

Source: Census 2011; Socio Economic and Caste Census 2011

Nearly 79% (over 18 million) of households headed by women in rural India live on less than Rs 33 per day, compared with around 74% of households headed by men.

IndiaSpend had earlier reported how 670 million Indians in rural areas live on Rs 33 per day.

 

Source: Socio-Economic and Caste Census

 

While 94% of houses (around 21.7 million) headed by women live in owned houses, this is marginally lower than 95% of households run by men.

 

Source: Socio-Economic and Caste Census

 

Up to 29% of women-headed houses are kuccha (not solid). It is only here that they are better than men-headed households, nearly 30% of whom live in kuccha houses.

Only 47% of women-headed households live in pucca (permanent) houses, against 48% for men-headed households.

Having a pucca house is an indicator of a higher standard of living.

 

Source: Socio-Economic and Caste Census
 


(IndiaSpend is a data-driven, public-interest journalism non-profit)

 

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First Published: Tue, August 04 2015. 09:47 IST
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