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Covid 19 and gender inequality in Nepal

Gender inequality was already an existing issue in the developing country Nepal. Nepal went under a strict lockdown from March to June 2020. Since the lockdown, there has been a rise in the reports of gender-based violence in the country. In between March-May 2020, there were reported cases of 465 Gender based violence in Nepal which is likely to increase when different organizations will make the data collected public.

In a country like Nepal, getting the data for the issues like gender-based violence is difficult as many victims don’t report the issue. For the sake of family honour and Nepalese society has a tendency of blaming the women for their own assault, due to which most victims choose to keep quiet and not report the issue. Similarly, most women were trapped at home with their abusers due to lockdown and the pandemic.

Nepal’s constitution promises gender equality in terms of education, work, wages etc. However, in reality, there is still the existence of gender disparity. According to the Nepal force survey, the literacy rate for women is 57.4 % whereas for men is 75.1%. Talking about the income disparity, Nepalese women earn Nrs. 5834 less than what Nepalese men earn. Also, talking about the employment disparity for every 100 employed males there were only 59 employed females. Due to covid 19 the home workload has increased for the women and due to which women might be left further behind. The evidence shows that earlier epidemics had resulted in most girls dropping out from the schools.

Since there was already an employment disparity, the pandemic has put women in even worse positions. Many people have lost jobs in Nepal and with the employment disparity it would not be wrong to say that most women may not be able to regain their lost jobs back and would fall back into the more traditional roles. This also indicates that women in Nepal are lacking economic security due to the pandemic. However, there has been different organizations who have been tracking gender-based violence and addressing this issue.

By Rojina Luintel


References:

https://thediplomat.com/2020/06/how-covid-19-worsens-gender-inequality-in-nepal/

https://www.researchgate.net/publication/343240648_How_COVID-19_Worsens_Gender_Inequality_in_Nepal

https://options.co.uk/news/addressing-gender-based-violence-in-nepal-during-covid-19

https://blogs.worldbank.org/endpovertyinsouthasia/improving-nepals-response-gender-based-violence


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