Comparison between Gujarat and Kerala Models
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SEVERAL indicators that measure the quality of life of children and women show a marked variance when Gujarat is compared to Kerala. This gives a snapshot of the difference between the ‘Gujarat Model’ and Kerala’s people oriented path of development.
EDUCATION: Gujarat has a Gross Enrolment Ratio (GER) of 96 per cent at the primary stage, slightly lower than Kerala’s 100 per cent and the India average of 103 per cent. But, by the secondary stage (class 9-10), GER drops to 77 per cent in Gujarat while it is still very high in Kerala at 97 per cent. At the senior secondary stage, Gujarat’s GER has plummeted down to just 43 per cent even lower than the India average of 51 per cent. Kerala is way ahead at 83 per cent. These striking figures show that more than half of students in Gujarat drop out by the time they are of the senior secondary stage. (Data for 2019-20; Source: UDISE)
LIFE EXPECTANCY: It is the average age to which people live. In Gujarat it is 70.5 years while in Kerala it is 75 years. The India average is 70 years. (Data for 2016-20; Source: SRS, ORGI)
INFANT MORTALITY RATE: This is the number of children dying before they reach one year age, out of 1000 live births. In Gujarat this is 23 while in Kerala it is just 6. India average is 28. (Data for 2020; Source: SRS, ORGI)
CHILD DIET: Just 6 per cent of children aged between 6 and 23 months were getting an adequate diet compared to 23.5 per cent in Kerala, and 11.3 per cent at the all India level. An adequate diet is defined as breast milk or certain amounts of non-solid or solid foods of different types as also regular intervals. (2019-20; NFHS-5)
MALNUTRITION: Three measures are used to evaluate whether children are malnourished. For children under five years of age, the data is: (2019-20; NFHS-5)
• Stunting (low height for age): In Gujarat, 39 per cent of children are stunted compared to 23.4 per cent in Kerala and 35.5 per cent at India level.
• Wasted (weight for height): In Gujarat 25.1 per cent of children are wasted while in Kerala the share is 15.8 per cent and all India average is 19.3 per cent.
• Under-weight (weight for age): Nearly 40 per cent children are underweight in Gujarat twice the share in Kerala which is nearly 20 per cent. India average is 32 per cent.
CHILD ANAEMIA: Among children 6-59 months old, an incredible 79.7 per cent are anaemic in Gujarat, higher than even the India average of 67.1 per cent, and much higher than the Kerala average of 39.4 per cent. (2019-20; NFHS-5)
WOMEN’S EDUCATION: In Gujarat, 73.5 per cent of women are literate while in Kerala, 97.4 per cent women are literate. More importantly, only about 34 per cent of women in Gujarat have had 10 or more years of schooling. The corresponding figure for Kerala is 77 per cent. The all India average is 41 per cent. (2019-20; NFHS-5)
WOMEN’S MARRIAGE AGE: In Gujarat, nearly 22 per cent of married women in the 20-24 age group said they were married before they were 18 years old. This roughly the same proportion as the all India average of 23.3 per cent but almost four times higher than the Kerala average (6.3 per cent). (2019-20; NFHS-5)
MATERNAL MORTALITY RATE: This is the number of mothers that die due to complications during child birth for every one lakh births. In Gujarat it is 70 while in Kerala it is less than half at 30. India average is 103. (Data for 2017-19; Source: SRS, ORGI)
WOMEN WITH ANAEMIA: Nearly 63 per cent of pregnant women (15 to 49 years old) in Gujarat were anaemic compared to 31.4 per cent in Kerala. The India average is about 52 per cent. Among all women in the same age group, 65 per cent were anaemic in Gujarat compared to 57 per cent at India level and 36 per cent in Kerala. (2019-20; NFHS-5)
EXPECTING MOTHERS’ CARE: While 77 per cent expecting women in Gujarat got four ante-natal health check-ups, in Kerala it was slightly higher at 79 per cent while the all India average was just 58 per cent. But on the issue of a key component of this care – taking iron and folic acid – there was a wide difference. In Gujarat only 43 per cent of expecting women took Iron/folic acid for 180 days while in Kerala the share of such women was 67 per cent. The all India average is 26 per cent. (2019-20; NFHS-5)
SPOUSAL VIOLENCE: Among ever married women, 14 per cent in Gujarat had experienced violence from the husband, while in Kerala the share was 9.9 per cent. The all India average was about 29 per cent. (2019-20; NFHS-5)
HOME FACILITIES: In Gujarat 74 per cent of households had an improved sanitation facility compared to Kerala where nearly 99 per cent households had such facilities. The all India average is 70 per cent. In Gujarat, about 67 per cent households used clean fuel for cooking compared to 72 per cent in Kerala, with the India average being 59 per cent. (2019-20; NFHS-5)
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