Skip to main content

Top global report praises UPA govt effort in 2005-14 to reduce hunger, after bringing in major policy changes

Counterview Desk
Even as ranking India 80th in Global Hunger Index (GHI) among 104 developing countries, a new study, carried out by a group of research organizations led by the Washington-based International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) says that the country’s has been able to successfully fight against child undernutrition in India after 2005.
Giving full mark to the Government of India (GoI) rulers of the period till 2014, the report – which has been prepared in coordination with Concern Worldwide, Welthungerhilfe (Bonn) and World Peace Foundation (Dublin) – says that in India, “wasting in children fell from 20 per cent to 15 per cent between 2005–2006 and 2013–2014, and stunting fell from 48 percent to 39 percent.”
The study is based on a calculation of four indicators: percentage of the population that is undernourished, of children under five years old who suffer from wasting (low weight for height), of children under five years old who suffer from stunting (low height for age), and of children who die before the age of five (child mortality).
The calculation results in “GHI scores on a 100-point scale where 0 is the best score (no hunger) and 100 the worst” the study says, adding, “Across regions and countries, GHI scores vary considerably.” India’s GHI was 48.1 in 1990, reduced to 42.3 in 1995, slightly came down to 38.2 in 2000, then increased to 38.5, and went down to 29.0 in 2015.
The best GHI score is of Kuwait – just 5.0 – and the worst is that of the Central African Republic, 46.9. While Pakistan, with a GHI score of 33.9, ranks 93rd, one of the worst in the world, Bangladesh, with a GHI score of 27.3, is a little better than India, ranking 73rd.
Despite India's improvement, South Asia's performance is worst among all world regions
Among the BRICS countries, which India considers as its main competitors, Russia’s GHI score is 6.6, ranking 11th. Brazil is found to be much better than all the 104 countries with a GHI score of less than 5.0 and has not been included the list. As for China, it ranks No 21 with a GHI score of 8.6, and South Africa with a score of 12.4 ranks No 38th.
The study believes, the improvement in India has happened because the GoI during 2005 and 2014 “scaled up nutrition-specific interventions over the past decade”, including
  • “a final drive to expand the Integrated Child Development Services program that aims to improve the health, nutrition, and development of children in India; and 
  • “the creation of the National Rural Health Mission, a community-based health initiative designed to deliver essential health services to rural India.”
Even as saying that South Asia’s GHI score, after declining “at a moderate rate between 1990 and 2000”, with progress stalling between 2000 and 2005 “before hunger levels dropped again between 2005 and 2015”, the study says, it largely due to India that the region’s GHI dropped by “more than 8 points.”
“However”, the study underlines, “Progress in reducing child undernutrition has been uneven across India’s states. While the reasons for the improvements—or lack thereof—are not entirely clear, one factor that seems to correlate with undernutrition in India is open defecation, which contributes to illnesses that prevent the absorption of nutrients.”
“Additionally”, the study says, “The low social status of women, which affects women’s health and nutrition, makes it more likely that babies will be born underweight.”

Comments

TRENDING

Buddhist shrines massively destroyed by Brahmanical rulers in "pre-Islamic" era: Historian DN Jha's survey

By Our Representative
Prominent historian DN Jha, an expert in India's ancient and medieval past, in his new book, "Against the Grain: Notes on Identity, Intolerance and History", in a sharp critique of "Hindutva ideologues", who look at the ancient period of Indian history as "a golden age marked by social harmony, devoid of any religious violence", has said, "Demolition and desecration of rival religious establishments, and the appropriation of their idols, was not uncommon in India before the advent of Islam".

RSS' 25,000 Shishu Mandirs 'follow' factory school model of Christian missionaries

By Bhabani Shankar Nayak*
The executive committee of the International Union of Anthropological and Ethnological Sciences (IUAES) recently decided to drop the KISS University in Odisha as the co-host of the World Anthropology Congress-2023. The decision is driven by the argument that KISS University is a factory school.

India must recognise: 4,085 km Himalayan borders are with Tibet, not China

By Tenzin Tsundue, Sandeep Pandey*
There has as been a cancerous wound around India’s Himalayan neck ever since India's humiliating defeat during the Chinese invasion of India in 1962. The recent Galwan Valley massacre has only added salt to the wound. It has come to this because, when China invaded the neighbouring country Tibet in 1950, India was in high romance with the newly-established communist regime under Mao Zedong after a bloody revolution.

Swami Vivekananda's views on caste and sexuality were 'painfully' regressive

By Bhaskar Sur*
Swami Vivekananda now belongs more to the modern Hindu mythology than reality. It makes a daunting job to discover the real human being who knew unemployment, humiliation of losing a teaching job for 'incompetence', longed in vain for the bliss of a happy conjugal life only to suffer the consequent frustration.

Time to give Covid burial, not suspend, World Bank's 'flawed' Doing Business ranking

By Maju Varghese*
On August 27, the World Bank came out with a statement suspending the Doing Business Report. The statement said that a number of irregularities have been reported regarding changes to the data in the Doing Business 2018 and Doing Business 2020 reports, published in October 2017 and 2019. The changes in the data were inconsistent with the Doing Business methodology.

Delhi riots: Cops summoning, grilling, intimidating young to give 'false' evidence

Counterview Desk
More than 440 concerned citizens have supported the statement issued by well-known bureaucrat-turned-human rights activist Harsh Mander ‘We will not be silenced’ which said that the communal riots in Delhi in February 2020 have not been caused by any conspiracy, as alleged by the Delhi Police, but by “hate speech and provocative statements made by a number of political leaders of the ruling party.”

WHO chief ignores India, cites Pak as one of 7 top examples in fight against Covid-19

By Our Representative
In a move that would cause consternation in India’s top policy makers in the Modi government, Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, World Health Organization (WHO) director-general, has singled out Pakistan among seven countries that have set “examples” in investing in a healthier and safer future in order to fight the Covid-19 pandemic.

Tata Mundra: NGOs worry as US court rules World Bank can't be sued for 'damages'

By Kate Fried, Mir Jalal*
On August 24 evening, a federal court ruled that the World Bank Group cannot be sued for any damage caused by its lending, despite last year’s Supreme Court ruling in the same case that these institutions can be sued for their “commercial activity” in the United States.

Top Catholic group wants quota for Dalit Christians, foreign fund licenses revived

By Our Representative
Reiterating its long-pending demand to give "scheduled rights for Dalit Christians”, the All-India Catholic Union (AICU) has regretted that while converts to Sikhism and Buddhism from the former untouchable, or Dalit communities, have been included in the scheduled caste (SC) category, Christians from the identical communities have been “kept out.”