The Oxfam Report Claims Just 31% Indian Women Own Mobile Phones

Recent Oxfam Report Says Only 13% Women Have Access To Phones In India


  • On Sunday, the non-governmental organisation Digital Divide released the India Inequality Report 2022. 
  • According to the report, the likelihood of an Indian woman owning a mobile phone is 15% lower than that of an Indian man. 
  • In addition to this, it was stated that women were 33% less likely than men to use mobile internet services.

According to a study that was carried out by the non-governmental organization Oxfam India in India, women only make up one third of internet users. 

According to the ‘India Inequality Report 2022: Digital Divide’ that was published by the NGO on Sunday, Indian women have a 15% lower chance of owning a mobile phone and a 33% lower chance of using mobile internet connections than men do. 

According to the study, India performs the worst out of all the countries in the Asia-Pacific region, with the largest gender gap of 40.4%. The report also highlights the digital divide between rural and urban areas. 

According to the report, only 31% of the rural population utilizes the internet, in contrast to the 67% of their urban counterparts who do so. This is despite the fact that the rural population has been enrolling a significant (digital) growth rate of 13% per year. 

This report presents an analysis of the primary data obtained from the household survey conducted by the Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy (CMIE) between January 2018 and December 2021. 

According to the report, the state with the highest rate of number of internet users is Maharashtra, preceded by Goa and Kerala. The state with the lowest rate of internet penetration is Bihar, preceded by Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand. 

The National Student Survey (NSS) (2017-18) found that only about 9 percent of students who participated in any class had the use of a computer with internet, while 25 percent of students who participated had internet access through any type of smartphone. The report also found that only about 9 percent of students had computer access with internet. 

The digital push that was caused by the pandemic led to India having the highest number of real-time digital transactions in the world in 2021, which was 48.6 billion. 

However, the likelihood of a digital payment being made by the richest 60% in India is four times more likely than the probability of a cashless banking being made by the lowest income 40% in India. 

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The percentage of ST households in rural India that make use of formal financial services is the lowest. This is accompanied by the percentage of SC populations and then OBC populations. 

India is ranked number 105 out of 193 countries on the UN’s e-participation index (2022), which is a comprehensive index of 3 main dimensions of e-government, notably requirement of online services, telecommunication interconnection, and human potential. 

A concerning picture emerges from the report regarding disparities in access to digital devices and services along all categories such as caste, affluence, and education. This aspect of the situation is related to the first point. 

The report utilized primary and secondary research from the National Sample Survey in its analysis of the data collected from the household survey conducted by the Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy between January 2018 and December 2021. 

Both higher degrees of education and income are associated with an increased likelihood of possessing a personal computer. 

The percentage of people living in urban areas who did not have access to a computer rose by seven percentage points to 91 percent, while the percentage of people living in rural areas who did not have access to a computer rose to as high as 99 percent.

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Kumkum Pattnaik
Kumkum's unparalleled love for gadgets is what drives her to research, scrutinize and pen down tech-related content from every corner of the world. Whether it is getting her hands on the latest electronic devices or reading voraciously to find what tech mammoths are up to, she makes sure that her inventory is up-to-date. View More Posts