India Inequality Report 2022
- Recently Oxfam India has released the annual ‘India Inequality Report 2022’ titled ‘Digital Divide’.
- In this, the crisis of inequality prevailing in the country has been underlined. The report for the year 2022 outlines the widening digital divide in India and its impact on essential services such as education, health and financial inclusion.
- Oxfam India is a non-profit organization. It is working to promote child education, empower women and aid measures against inequality in India.
Key Findings of the Report
- In the year 2021, 61% of men had mobile phones, while this proportion among women is only 31%.
- 67% of the urban population is using the internet, while it is only 31% in rural areas.
- After Kovid, the use of computer devices in rural areas has decreased.
- The richest 60% are four times more likely to make a digital payment than the poorest 40%.
- Maharashtra has the highest number of Internet users, while Bihar has the lowest.
Recommendations made to end the digital divide
- Internet availability in rural and remote areas should be improved through measures such as community networks and public Wi-Fi/Internet access points.
- Government should make digital devices affordable. For this, steps like investing in digital infrastructure, building a strong regulatory framework and reducing taxes on computers and phones should be taken.
- Digital literacy camps should be organized especially in rural India. Apart from this, digitization of panchayats and schools should also be done.
- Grievance redressal mechanism should be set up to address the grievances related to edtech and healthtech.
- The digital divide is “the gap that exists between individuals at different socioeconomic levels, households, businesses, and geographic regions in terms of access to information and communications technologies (CTs) and opportunities to use the Internet for a variety of activities.”
Source – The Hindu