Day 29 – Q 2. Do you see a perceptible decline in family as an institution? If yes, what are the underlying factors causing it? Analyse. (1o Marks)

  • IASbaba
  • February 28, 2022
  • 0
GS 1, Indian Society, TLP-UPSC Mains Answer Writing
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2. Do you see a perceptible decline in family as an institution? If yes, what are the underlying factors causing it? Analyse. (1o Marks)

क्या आप एक संस्था के रूप में परिवार में प्रत्यक्ष गिरावट को देखते हैं? यदि हां, तो इसके अंतर्निहित कारण क्या हैं ? विश्लेषण करें।


Students are expected to write about the basics of family and as institution it’s decline also. Also mention the factors responsible for it. 


The family, in Indian society, is an institution by itself and a typical symbol of the collectivist culture of India right from the ancient times. Many believes that the family is fragmenting, as there is an increase in the legal and social acceptance of marital breakdown, cohabitation and so on.


Decline of family as an institution:

  • The increasing commercialization of the economy and the development of the infrastructure of the modern state have introduced a significant change in the family structure in India in the 20th century. Especially, the last few decades have witnessed important alterations in family life.
  • All of these changes are taking place in the context of increased urbanization, which is separating children from elders and contributing disintegration of family-based support systems.
  • Decline in family system might create case for more individuals to face mental health issues. 
  • Decline in family as institution will bring structural changes in society. On the positive side, Indian society might see decreased growth of population and feminization of workforce as impact of decline in family as institution. 

Factors responsible for such change:

  • Change in Fertility: Fertility declined due to the combined effect of substantial socio-economic development and shift from agriculture. The emphasis was on the quality of life rather than the number of children, a new concept added to the family. 
  • No fixed habitation: In the daily life if an individual doesn’t have a home the life would be one of great unrest as it would be haphazard in nature.
  • Modernistic value: Carrier oriented, competitive and highly aspirational generations are keeping restraint from so called complicated family structures. 
  • Individualism over collectivism: Individualism led to assertion of rights and freedom of choices. It forced generations to see sense of achievement in life through only material prosperity perspective. 
  • High divorce rates: Technology driven change in attitude, behaviours and compromised values becoming major cause for breaking down of marriages. Anti-social behaviour is increasingly destroying families.
  • Parochial attitude: High earnings and less responsibility to other family members have attracted extended families to split up.
  • Emerging agency: The most of the socializing functions today, like child raising, education, occupational training, caring of elderly, etc., have been taken over by the outside agencies, such as crèches, media, nursery schools, hospitals, occupational training centres, hospice institutions, funeral contractors, etc. These tasks were once exclusively performed by the family.


Family is a very fluid social institution and in the process of constant change. Modernity is witnessing the emergence of same-sex couples (LGBT relationship), cohabitation or live-in relations, single-parent households, a large chunk of divorced living alone or with their children. These kinds of families might not necessarily function as traditional kinship group and may not always prove institution for socialization.  

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