SRINAGAR: Women in Kashmir enjoy low socio-economic status due to emerging gender issues especially patriarchal social system prevalent in the Valley, according to a study.
Titled ‘Emerging issues of gender in Kashmir: A sociological concern’, the study conducted by Discipline of Sociology, School of Social Sciences, IGNOU, New Delhi, was aimed to find the women issues in summer capital of state Srinagar taking into consideration the growing intensity of gender problems. “Gender issues in Kashmir are far more intensified and institutionalized among both the genders,” it says.
Despite some initiatives launched by the government to improve the status of women in Kashmir, a majority of them continue to struggle with day-to-day issues, the study says.
It says majority of women in Srinagar are struggling with issues related to economy, education, politics, domestic violence, declining sex ratio, female foeticide and infanticide, late marriage, state violence, dowry harassment, eve-teasing, unequal wages, child marriage, child sexual abuse, child labor, acid throwing, and sexual harassment at work. However, health issue remains the major challenge confronting the women in Srinagar.
“The data reveals that only 46.25% women enjoy good health in Srinagar while rest of the women folk is suffering from different types of health disorders, with polycystic ovarian syndrome being the most common,” says the study.
The emerging trend of divorce and late marriages, the study says, is also negatively affecting the health of women. Not only is this, but the growing work culture without the availability of adequate incentives and medical facilities also poses a serious threat.
The study cites compulsions imposed by gender bias and patriarchal system as one of the biggest reasons for women to stay away from medical care.
“The data also indicates that the adult women (19-45 years) are the worst victims of various diseases as is obvious from their lowest percentage of good health (15% only).”
In addition, unmarried women were found to be having better health status compared to the married lot.