Fertility differential among socio-economic group: a comparative study of some selected states in India

Ravindra P Singh, KKPG College, Etawah
Vipin Chandra Gupta, KKPG College, Etawah

A unique feature of the Indian society is the caste system. The stratification of the Indian population into sub-groups defined by caste, which is determined by birth, has been in existence for thousands of years. It is now considered one of the major social hurdles in the development of the nation. There is a well-established hierarchy of castes that can be considered under four broad headings, namely, Brahmins, Kshatriyas, Vaisyas and Shudras, and such a stratification in terms of castes (‘Varna’) was originally based on occupational division without a vertical social hierarchy. The National Population Policy has listed short and long term goals to be achieved for population stabilization and achievement of key socio-demographic indicators by the year 2010 and 2045. One of the key objectives is attainment of TFR 2.1 by 2010 for the country. It is felt that although progress in some states is unsatisfactory, poor performance in Bihar, U.P, M.P, Rajasthan and Orissa is proving to be a drag on national achievement. The data has been analyzed from National Family Health Survey-3(NFHS-2) conducted in 2005-06. The NFHS-3 sample covers more than 99 percent of India’s population living in all 25 states. The study suggest that there is lots of variation in the mean number of children ever born (MCEB) among the socio economic groups. The major factors, which are playing a significant role in fertility differential, are level of education, type of residence, marriages below eighteen; religion other than Hindu shows more MCEB than the Hindu, type of occupation, caste/ ethnicity.

Presented in Poster Session 1