Odisha is a front-runner in women’s land ownership, much of it owing to government policies from the 1980s. But has ownership led to empowerment?
Surrounded by sun-drenched paddy fields interspersed with jackfruit and banana trees, Sanakusupadu is a hamlet in Odisha’s tribal-dominated district of Rayagada. Here, almost every married woman owns land.
No matter how small the holding, land documents of the 62 households in this village bear the names of the women landholders alongside those of their husbands.