GS (M) Paper-1: “Social empowerment”
Attaining economic equality between genders will take another 170 years
- Efforts to close gender gaps in economic sphere, have slowed dramatically in the past year that men and women may not reach economic equality for another 170 years, the World Economic Forum (WEF) has said in its annual Global Gender Gap Index – 2016.
About the Global Gender Gap Index:
- Published by World Economic Forum.
- First published in 2006.
- Indicators used: Economic participation and opportunity, Educational attainment, Political empowerment, Health and survival.
Highlights of the report:
- Iceland and Finland ranked highest nations measured on progress in equality in education, health and survival, economic opportunity and political empowerment.
- They were followed by Norway and Sweden.
- Rwanda has took the next spot – which has improved economic participation and income equality and has the highest share of women parliamentarians in the world.
- The economic gap this past year reverted back to where it was in 2008.
- It stands at 59 per cent, meaning women’s economic participation and opportunity is a little more than half of what men have.
- Around the world, 54 per cent of working-age women on average participate in the formal economy, compared with 81 per cent of men.
- Women’s average annual earnings are roughly half those of men, estimated at $10,778, versus $19,873.
- The gap between men and women in terms of education — literacy and school enrolment — could be at equal levels within the next 10 years.
- Closing the gap in political empowerment, at current rates, could take 82 years.
GS (M) Paper-3: “Linkages between development and spread of extremism.”
Dealing with the Maoists
What is Maoism?
- Maoism is an ideology who believed that existing state structure is exploitative in nature and only through armed violence can end this exploitation.
- It teaches to capture state power through a combination of armed insurgency and mass mobilization.
Maoism in India:
- Maoism is concentrated in resource rich region from the borders of Indo-Nepal to central India to parts to southern India, which is also known as Red Corridor.
- They are located mostly in remote hilly areas which is easy to carry out their guerrilla warfare.
- Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had identified the Maoist movement as the biggest internal security threat.
- Buoyed by the unification of various Naxalite outfits into one party in 2004, they had consolidated themselves in some districts, taking advantage of the weak presence of the welfare and administrative agencies.
- But by subordinating political activism to militarism they have done little for tribal empowerment; instead, they settled for a war of attrition against the state.
- The state on its part has faltered, over a decade, in its dual strategy of containing the military threat of the Maoists and expanding its developmental footprint in these districts.
- After driving the Maoists away from undivided Andhra Pradesh into parts of Chhattisgarh, Maharashtra and Odisha, this strategy has been implemented unevenly and with mixed results.
- A state of civil war along with tribal repression persists in Chhattisgarh’s Bastar region.
Present situation of Maoism in India:
- Recently, the death of 28 members of the Communist Party of India (Maoist) in an operation by the security forces on the Odisha-Andhra Pradesh border is a big blow to the outlawed group.
- The joint operation was led by anti-Naxalite units of the Andhra Pradesh and Odisha police at Panasput village in Malkangiri district in Odisha.
- In September 2013, 13 Maoists were killed by the Odisha police in the same district, and the latest operation indicates the strength of the Special Forces deployed to counter insurgency in these States.
- The security forces had suffered significant losses when the Maoists killed 38 anti-Naxal Greyhound commandos in a boat attack in the Balimela reservoir in Malkangiri in June 2008.
- The military setbacks apart, the Maoists are today diminished politically as well.
Decline of Maoists:
- The desertion of one of their top tribal leaders, Sabyasachi Panda, in 2012 and the surrender of tribal cadres in Narayanpatna in Koraput district have set the Maoists on the back foot in southern Odisha.
- It is believed that the attacked cadres at Malkangiri district this week were at a “plenary” organised to examine ways of getting out of the current organisational and political morass.
- The Maoists have been unable to expand as a political force in the plains areas; and as a guerrilla force they have been limited to the remote and hilly tribal belt of central India.
- It is not clear whether these setbacks will compel the Maoists to disavow their insurgent goals and instead join the political mainstream to pursue their avowed ambition of guarding the interests of the tribal poor.
- Government has introduced many development schemes for the welfare of the tribal people located in the Maoist affected area.
- The implementation of development and welfare programmes has been slow.
- Greater political will is needed to address these shortcomings.