Gender Pay Gap in India

Average salary of men and women in India. Why do men earn more than women? Know interesting facts about gender pay gap in India

Gender Pay Gap in India - Evidence from Paycheck Data

The analysis of gender pay gap in India presented in this report is based on a voluntary online Salary Survey conducted by Paycheck India. Analysis is based on 16,500 online observations, out of which 13,729 were males and 2771 were females. Data was collected over a period of 6 years (from 2006 to 2011). The data came from employed persons across India.

Does gender pay gap exist in India and to what extent?

Yes, our analysis of collected data shows that a wide gender pay gap exists in India. The average gender pay gap is approximately 54% for years 2006 to 2011.

Has the gender pay gap narrowed over the years?

The data collected reveals that gender pay gap has narrowed over the years. It was above 70% before 2008 and has come down to almost 40% in 2011. Graph 1-Gender Pay Gap in India.

Does gender pay gap change with increase in wages?

Yes, gender pay gap changes with increase in wages. For wages below Rs1 Lakh and above Rs 50 Lakhs, the gender pay gap is negligible. However, for the wage group between Rs 1 Lakh to Rs 50 Lakhs the gender pay gap is above 40%. Graph 2-Gender Pay Gap with respect to Wages Earned

Does the gender pay gap Increase with Age?

Paycheck data shows pay gap increases with age. The gender pay gap is highest for the age group 50-60 years at 157% and lowest for the age group 20-30 years at 38%. Graph 3 - Gender Pay Gap with respect to Age of Employees

Does gender pay gap exist with respect to education?

It is observed that as the education level increases, the gender pay gap increases in most of the cases. The gender pay gap is lowest for Plus 2 or equivalent education level at 11.54% and is highest for Post Doctoral Education level at an alarming 180%. Graph 4 - Gender Pay Gap with respect to Education Attained by Employees.

Are men and women with the same work experience paid equally?

Data reveals that men and women with same work experience are not paid equally. Gender pay gap is low at junior level and high at senior levels. Graph 5 - Gender Pay Gap with respect to Work Experience.

Does gender pay gap exist with respect to occupation?

The extent of gender pay gap also depends on the occupation. For example, Paycheck data shows that the gender pay gap is highest for heatlh professionals at more than 65%. It is lowest for cleaners and helpers under elementary occupations at just a little above 1%. It is also worthy to note that the gender pay gap is remarkably low for information and communication technicians at only 4.37%. Graph 6 - Gender Pay Gap with respect to Occupation.

Is any variation observed in gender pay gap with change in industry?

Pay gap is highest for activities of extraterritorial[i] organizations and bodies at 87.63%. It is also considerably high for arts, entertainment and recreation industry and industry category of electricity, gas, steam and air conditioning suppliers at more than 50%. Whereas, it is negative for activities of households as employers at merely (-0.42)% and for Wholesale and retail trade industry it is less than 10%. Graph 7 - Gender Pay Gap across Industries

Does marital status affect gender pay gap?

Marital status is also one of the factors for gender pay gap. For women who were single, the gender pay gap is the lowest at 27%. It increases for married women and divorced women at a little above 40%. It is highest for widowed women at more than 60%. Graph 8 - Gender Pay Gap and Marital Status.

Does gender wage gap vary across States in India?
The gender wages gap varies across Indian States. The gender wage gap is highest in the state of Assam and Rajasthan at 64% and 59% respectively. The gap is relatively low in the southern part of India. The gender wage gap is lowest for New Delhi at 20%. Figure 1 - Gender Pay Gap across Indian States


Equal Pay and Indian Labour Law

Does the law in India provide for equal pay?

Yes, various Articles of the Constitution of India attempt to ensure that there is no prevalence of gender pay gap. Specific legislations also address gender pay gap. These articles of the Constitution are as follows:

  • Article 14: Men & women to have equal rights & opportunities in the political, economic & social spheres.
  • Article 15(1): Prohibits discrimination against any citizen on the grounds of religion, race, caste, sex etc.
  • Article 15(3): Special provision enabling the State to make affirmative discriminations in favour of women.
  • Article 16: Equality of opportunities in matter of public appointments for all citizens.
  • Article 39(a): The State shall direct its policy towards securing all citizens men and women, equally, the right to means of livelihood.
  • Article 39(d): Equal pay for equal work for both men and women
  • Article 42: The State to make provision for ensuring just and humane conditions of work and maternity relief.
  • Article 51 (A) (e): To renounce the practices derogatory to the dignity of women.

Has the Indian Government passed Acts in order to ensure equal pay and equal treatment at workplace?

The Indian Government has passed various Acts to ensure equal pay and equal treatment at workplace. These Acts are as follows:

  • Workmen’s Compensation Act, 1923:
    • Aimed at providing financial protection to the workmen & his / her dependants in case of accidental injury by means of payment of compensation by a certain class of employers.
    • Due to the difference in bargaining power there are chances that the woman may be subject to exploitation. This act helps to avoid that risk.
  • Minimum Wages Act, 1948: To provide for a statutory fixation of minimum wages, since workers are poorly organized & have a less bargaining power in India. There is no different wages paid for women workers.
  • Factories Act, 1948: Introduced to regulate the condition of labourers employed in the factories.
  • Contract Labour (Regulation and Abolition) Act, 1970: Provides for the separate provision for utilities and fixed working hours for women.
  • Equal Remuneration Act of 1976
    • Provides for equal pay to men & women for equal work.
    • Act was enacted keeping in mind the unequal physical & sociological burden a woman faces at the time of child bearing & rearing.


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