Capital: New Delhi
Life expectancy: 65 years
GNI per capita: $620
HIV prevalence rate: 0.9% of population 15-49 years old
Under 5 Mortality rate: 85 per 1000 live births
Malnutrition: 47% under 5s
South India is a dry, drought prone area with high rural poverty. The long coastline is rich in sea resources, but is vulnerable to exploitation by large companies who are fishing it out, leaving local communities without livelihoods. Bonded labour is widespread, where rural workers become indebted to landlords and have to work the debts off. The debts are often inherited, locking generation after generation into slave like working conditions. There is extensive child labour, especially in the fireworks and match industries.
Caste discrimination is well entrenched, although now illegal. Dalits, formerly known as the untouchables, are the lowest, most marginalised group in the caste hierarchy. They are expected to do the most demeaning and menial tasks, live in segregated areas, use separate water wells, drinking vessels and dishes and suffer other daily humiliations.
CWS supports six partners in the eastern coastal state of Tamil Nadu who are:
EKTA - visit their website
Federation for Dalit Women’s Empowerment
Human Rights, Advocacy & Research Foundation
Social Action for New Development
Women’s Development Resource Centre
SNEHA post tsunami development programme