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News > Half of couples in India have similar education levels across age groups


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Half of couples in India have similar education levels across age groups


Hindustan Times: Oct 03, 2018 : Older husbands and younger wives from similar caste and religious groups are the defining characteristics of more than three-fourths of married couples in India.
Parity exists in the education level of more than 50% of the couples. Two-thirds of couples have only the husband working for a living; the wife not working is a more common phenomenon among richer and more educated couples. These findings are based on data for nearly 64,000 couples from the 2015-16 National Family and Health Survey (NFHS).
Just over 2% married men have a wife who is older. Three-fourths of husbands are at least two years older than their wives. However, the intra-couple age difference has been coming down. It is almost 7 years for the 50-54 year age cohort, and just 2.5 for 20-24 year olds. Among major religious groups, Hindus, Muslims and Christians have the highest age difference between husband and wife (an average of a little over 5 years), while it is the lowest among Sikhs (just 3.6 years). (See chart 1)
The data also shows a gradual convergence in the share of couples where either the husband or wife is more educated than the other. Educational parity among couples is more likely among urban, economically well-off couples. Hindus (34%) are most likely to have wives with lower education levels. This figure is the lowest among Christians (18%). This might possibly be because educational disparity between men and women is the least among Christians. (See chart 2)
Interestingly, the trend of richer urban couples having bigger parity in terms of education does not hold when it comes to employment equality for husbands and wives. The share of couples, where both husbands and wives work, increases by nine percentage points as one moves from the top to bottom wealth quintile across households.
Muslims have the lowest share (12.6%) of couples with both husband and wife working, and it is the highest among Christians (30.3%). (See chart 3)
The data shows that inter-caste marriages are more common (12.6%) than inter-religious marriages (just 2.6%) in India. Inter-religious marriages are the most common among Christians and the lowest among Hindus. The rate of inter-religious marriages has not changed over time as the rate is roughly the same across age cohorts but the rate of inter-caste marriages has displayed slim growth. (See chart 4)



09:22 - 04/10/2018    /    Number : 713912    /    Show Count : 110



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