Are Muslim Women behind in Their Knowledge and Use of Contraception in India?

Suresh Sharma, Institute of Economic Growth (IEG)

This paper uses DLHS) and NFHS) data to investigate the use and knowledge of contraceptive methods within two religious communities in India, Muslim and Hindu. The religious obligation and tenets of their religion require Muslim women to defer from using any contraceptive method. Such commitments to ones faith may turn out to be a deterrent in the use of contraception by this community. Given the data for Hindu and Muslims, it was found that use and knowledge of Traditional methods was significantly higher within Muslim women compared to Hindu Women. Consequently, Traditional use also showed a higher prevalence among Muslims. Multivariate logistic regression was used to determine the factors affecting use of traditional methods. The results showed that education significantly contributed to the use of traditional contraception in India. Age, rural residence, and wanting another child were significant in the socioeconomic factors examined.

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Presented in Poster Session 3