Over 60% women in 12 states and union territories have never used the internet, the latest National Family Health Survey has revealed. The survey covered 22 states and UTs in the country.
The states and UTs where less than 40% women have used the internet are Andhra Pradesh (21%), Assam (28.2%), Bihar (20.6%), Gujarat (30.8%), Karnataka (35%), Maharashtra (38%), Meghalaya (34.7%), Telangana (26.5%), Tripura (22.9%), West Bengal (25.5%), Dadra & Nagar Haveli and Daman & Diu (36.7%) and Andaman & Nicobar Islands (34.8%), the survey revealed.
In comparison, more percentage of men have used the internet. About 50% men have used the internet in seven states -- Andhra Pradesh (48.8%), Assam (42.3%), Bihar (43.6%), Meghalaya (42.1%), Tripura (45.7%), West Bengal (46.7%), Andaman & Nicobar Islands (46.5%), according to the data.
According to the survey, Andhra Pradesh (68.6%), Bihar (57.8%) and Telangana (66.6%) accounted for the lowest literacy rates among women, while Kerala (98.3%), Lakshadweep (96.5%) and Mizoram (94.4%) recorded the highest literacy rate among women in surveyed states and UTs.
Andhra Pradesh (79.5%) and Bihar (78.5%) accounted for lowest literacy rates among men while Kerala (98.2%) and Lakshadweep (99.1%) recorded the highest literacy rate among men in surveyed states and UTs.
Literacy refers to women or men who completed class 9 or higher and women or men who can read a whole sentence or part of a sentence, the survey said.
Less than 40% women had 10 or more years of schooling in eight states and UTs of Andhra Pradesh (39.6%), Assam (29.6%), Bihar (28.8%), Gujarat (33.8%), Meghalaya (35.1%), Tripura (23.2%), West Bengal (32.9%) and Dadra & Nagar Haveli and Daman & Diu (35.8%).
Less than 50% men had 10 or more years of schooling in nine states and UTs of Andhra Pradesh (47.9%), Assam (35.5%), Bihar (42.8%), Gujarat (45.6%), Meghalaya (34.7%), Mizoram (49.1%), Tripura (29.4%), West Bengal (34.7%) and Dadra & Nagar Haveli and Daman & Diu (49.4%).
The NFHS-5 (2019-20) was conducted in 6.1 lakh sample households, involving household-level interviews, to collect information on population, health, family planning and nutrition related indicators from 22 states and UTs.
The NFHS results of 17 states and five UTs (Assam, Bihar, Manipur, Meghalaya, Sikkim, Tripura, Andhra Pradesh, Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Gujarat, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu & Kashmir, Ladakh, Karnataka, Goa, Maharashtra, Telangana, West Bengal, Mizoram, Kerala, Lakshadweep, Dadra Nagar Haveli and Daman & Diu) have been released now as Phase-I. Phase-II covering other states will be released next year, the Health Ministry had said.