NY Times: Are men useless, at least when it comes to caring for a family?
India’s recent draft food security bill, currently in front of Parliament, seems to suggest so.
The bill proposes a radical shift — it requires that women become the “heads of household” for the purpose of issue of ration cards. A man would only be an acceptable household head if there is no woman over the age of 18 in the family to assign the ration card to.
India has about 330 million families who rely on ration cards. Currently a head of household, for ration card purposes, is defined by family members themselves. According to the provisional figures of the last census (2011) only 10.35 percent of the total households are headed by women.
The change was proposed after a look at some hard facts, some of which have been recognized as early as the 1970s.