FROM A CORRESPONDENT
SHILLONG, Sept 25: The tiol Family Health Survey (NFHS)-4 (2015-16), released for 16 Indian states, reveals that Meghalaya’s sex ratio has remained constant during the last decade.
The sex ratio of the state remained at 1005 females for 1000 males which was recorded even during the NFHS-3 (2005-2006).
Urban Meghalaya has, however, has more females with 1,067 against 1000 males while in the rural areas there are 991 females per 1000 males.
The survey also shows a jump in the population of female aged six years and above who attended school.
As per the survey’s data, 83 percent of girls who age are six years and above attended school even as the NFHS-3 (2005-2006) recorded only 66.2 percent.
The percentage of literate women also saw a significant jump in the last decade. While, the NFHS-4 (2015-2016) recorded 82.8 percent literate women in Meghalaya the last survey made in 2005-2006 recorded only 69.5 literate women in the state.
But, the literacy rate of women in matrilineal Meghalaya is still lower than that of its men. According to the survey, 84.0 percent on men in the state are literate. The last data recorded 72.7 literate males in Meghalaya.
Moreover, the infant mortality rate in the state has also dropped. As per the latest findings, it has dropped from 44 during the last survey in 2005-2006 to 30.
The latest survey has also seen a decrease in marriage of women aged between 20-24 years who were married before they were 18. During the latest survey 16.5 percent of women were recorded as compared to 24.5 percent in 2005-2006.
The NFHS-4 also reveals that Meghalaya recorded a Total Fertility Rate (TFR) of 3 from the 3.80 recorded during NFHS-3 (2005-06).
TFR is the number of children who would be born to a woman (per 1,000 women) if she/they were to pass through the childbearing years bearing children according to a current schedule of age-specific fertility rates.
The data also shows that Meghalaya is the best state in adopting condoms, IUDs and oral pills, and also there has been a decline in sterilisation.
In the usage of contraceptives, Meghalaya witnessed 7 per cent increase in oral pills usage at 11.70 per cent during NFHS-4 from 5 per cent earlier.
Sterilisation of women in Meghalaya in NFHS-4 was 6.20 per cent from 9.50 per cent in NFHS-3, while the figure for male steriliation is nil in the last one decade from 0.10 per cent in NFHS-3.
The NFHS-4 fieldwork for Meghalaya was conducted from 6 April 2015 to 19 September 2015 by Nielsen (India) Private Limited and gathered information from 7,327 households, 9,201 women, and 1,146 men.