A study by International Institute for Population Sciences, Mumbai, and the Population Council, New Delhi, has revealed that young men in villages are more likely to have pre-marital sex than thier city counterparts.
But half the youth who had pre-marital sex did not even know that one sexual act was enough for pregnancy to take place. A total of 7,570 married and unmarried women and men between the ages of 15-29 were interviewed.
Shireen Jejeebhoy, associate professor, Population Council, said availability of space and privacy were some of the factors that favoured romantic relationships in rural areas. An informal chat by surveyors about dating locations found that secluded temples and fields were mostly favoured by the couples. “Urban couples obviously do not have such privacy,” she said.
The study has also thrown up a worrying trend of forced sex. Nearly 6 % young men and 32% young women reported being either persuaded or forced to engage in sex. Chances of contracting sexually transmitted diseases was also high among those indulging in pre-marital sex with 32% of men having sex with two or more partners as compared to 29 % of women.