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Does Political Reservation for Minorities Affect Child Labor? Evidence from India

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  • Elizabeth Kaletski

    (University of Connecticut)

  • Nishith Prakash

    (University of Connecticut)

Abstract

This paper examines the impact of state level political reservation for two minority groups- Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes-on child labor in India. We estimate the effect of political reservation on child labor by exploiting the state variation in the share of seats reserved for the two groups in state legislative assemblies mandated by the Constitution of India. Using data from state and household level surveys on fifteen major Indian states, we find that at the household level, Schedule Tribe reservation decreases the incidence of child labor, while Scheduled Caste reservation increases the total number of children working. Our results survive a variety of robustness checks and potential explanations for the differential impact of SC and ST political reservation are also explored, including geographic isolation, caste fragmentation, support for the Congress Party, and decentralization of power.

Suggested Citation

  • Elizabeth Kaletski & Nishith Prakash, 2014. "Does Political Reservation for Minorities Affect Child Labor? Evidence from India," Working papers 2014-12, University of Connecticut, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:uct:uconnp:2014-12
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Prakash, Nishith, 2008. "Improving the Labor Market Outcomes of Minorities: The Role of Employment Quota," MPRA Paper 11010, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    2. Kaletski, Elizabeth & Prakash, Nishith, 2016. "Does Political Reservation for Minorities Affect Child Labor? Evidence from India," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 87(C), pages 50-69.
    3. Kaletski, Elizabeth & Prakash, Nishith, 2014. "Can Elected Minority Representatives Affect Health Worker Visits? Evidence from India," IZA Discussion Papers 8387, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    4. Kshitij Chaudhary, 2015. "The effect of political decentralisation and affirmative action on Multidimensional Poverty Index: evidence from Indian States," Journal of Social and Economic Development, Springer;Institute for Social and Economic Change, vol. 17(1), pages 27-49, April.
    5. Mariella Sica, 2012. "Politics and Religion in India: Minorities," Transition Studies Review, Springer;Central Eastern European University Network (CEEUN), vol. 19(1), pages 131-138, September.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Affirmative action; Minorities; Child labor; India;

    JEL classification:

    • I38 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Government Programs; Provision and Effects of Welfare Programs
    • J15 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Minorities, Races, Indigenous Peoples, and Immigrants; Non-labor Discrimination
    • J22 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Time Allocation and Labor Supply
    • J78 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Discrimination - - - Public Policy (including comparable worth)

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