Measuring Disability in India: Spatial and Socioeconomic Variations

Dilip C. Nath, Gauhati University
Mousumi Nath, SEPHRD

This study is based on Indian Census (2001) data on disability. The Indian census considers the five types of disability, namely, disabilities in: (i) seeing (ii) speech (iii) hearing (iv) movement and (v) mental disorder. In this paper, we compute the disability indices specific to five types of disability measurement based on Crude Disability Rates. Then a weighted disability index has been developed to measure the true status of disability. Disability Indices are estimated for all 26 Indian states and Union territories: for literate and illiterate, urban and rural, and workers and non-workers, male and female. The Disability Index is largest in Kerala and smallest in a tribal state Nagaland. Many Indian states have very high level of disability indices portraying a very grim disability picture. There are significant variations in disability status between urban and rural areas, between workers and non-workers, and between males and females.

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Presented in Session 126: International Demography of Disability