Ongoing Farmer's Protest Fail to Addresh Gender Gap in India's Agriculture Sector



Ongoing Farmer's Protest Fail to Addresh Gender Gap in India's Agriculture Sector

Ongoing Farmer's Protest Fail to  Addresh Gender Gap in India's Agriculture Sector

The latest controversial farm laws that have been brought in further increases the gender divide in India's agriculture. See available data shows that rural women play a critical role in Indian agriculture. According to this data around 73.2% of rural women are engaged in farming activities. But despite this, only 12.8% of them own land, and this highlights the gender divide in Indian agriculture, which is a direct result of our social religious, and cultural practices, which are inherently biased towards men, and patriarchy and thereby undermined human rights. Data from the India Human Development Survey report shows that 83% of India's agricultural land is held by male farmers, clearly indicating the bias against women are social religious and cultural practices. They have all promoted male inheritance, thereby undermining the land and property rights of women. So this lack of recognition, given to women farmers in India's agriculture and their lack of landholding rights ends up, excluding them from the benefits of several government schemes as well, because even the government and its policies have turned a blind eye towards this patriarchal exclusion of women from the agriculture sector. As a result, women farmers do not enjoy easy access to credit that is enabled by the government, and by the national banks, and they are not able to enjoy the benefits of crop insurance, loan waivers, government subsidies, etc. This lack of recognition of their property rights further affects their socio-economic status as well, including their health and education. So the new farm laws that have been brought out by the government were an opportunity to address women's rights, particularly the rights of women farmers, but unfortunately, the new laws don't pay any attention to this issue and even the current ongoing protests against the new farm laws. They are entirely focused on the MSP issue and the possible corporatization of India's agriculture. Even the protesters and the farmer unions have not raised the issue of women farmers and this systematic neglect of women farmers is going to further increase the gender divide in India's rural areas, and as well as in India's agriculture sector.

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