sulabh swatchh bharat

Wednesday, 19-June-2019

Sikkim Best Delhi Worst

Sikkim is not only the cleanest state in India, it offers the best working conditions for women. Ironically, the national capital Delhi has the worst rating in that respect, according to a recent report.

The report brought out by the Centre for Strategic and International Studies, a US think-tank and Nathan Associates, gave Sikkim 29.9 points while Delhi received just 8.5.

The states were ranked on four points:

Legal restrictions on women working hours in factories, retail and the IT industry;

Responsiveness of the state’s criminal justice system to crimes affecting working women, such as sexual harassment;

The number of women workers in the state as a percentage of total workers; and

The incentives offered to women entrepreneurs.

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“But the tiny northeastern state of Sikkim is the breakthrough state for women in the workplace, thanks to its high rates of female workforce participation, lack of restrictions on working hours of women, and high conviction rates for workforce crimes against women (albeit on a small sample size),” the report said. Sikkim is followed by Telangana (28.5 points), Puducherry (25.6), Karnataka (24.7), Himachal Pradesh (24.2), Andhra Pradesh (24.0), Kerala (22.2), Maharashtra (21.4), Tamil Nadu (21.1) and Chhattisgarh (21.1).

Four states (Sikkim, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, and Tamil Nadu) have removed all restrictions on women working at night in factories, retail establishments and the IT sector, the report said. In Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu, these restrictions were removed as a result of a court judgment. Maharashtra just missed a perfect score; it only allows women to work until 10 pm in retail establishments.

 At the other end of the spectrum, nine states and Union Territories do not formally allow women to work at night in any sector.  Fifteen states and Union Territories did not offer women entrepreneurs any special incentives in their business-promotion policies, it said.  “In something of a surprise, Delhi came last in our Index, due to its relatively low justice and workforce participation scores; its continued formal restrictions on women working at night in a wide range of sectors; and its lack of any incentives for female entrepreneurs in its industrial policies,” the report said. India has the world’s lowest rate (24 per cent) of female workforce participation. This is a serious drag on growth.

A 2015 report by the McKinsey Global Institute estimates that India could add 16 per cent to its GDP in ten years if women participated in the workforce at the same rate as men.  But many states have laws limiting women’s working hours, and Indian women face harassment in the workplace.