Hunger Situation Improves in India: Global Report
IANS | Updated: October 14, 2014 19:40 IST
According to a recent report, India has improved its stand regarding child nutrition and hunger. The Global Hunger Index (GHI) for 2014 shows that India now ranks 55th out of 76 Asian countries as far as hunger is concerned. It is ahead of Bangladesh and Pakistan, but behind Nepal and Sri Lanka. India was at the 63rd position on GHI last year.
The GHI report has been prepared by International Food Policy Research Institute along with NGOs Welthungerhilfe and Concern Worldwide.
The report also states that India has shown great progress in addressing the underweight issue in children. The country has made a significant improvement over the last estimate of 43.5 percent children under five being underweight in 2005-2006 while the figure was 30.7 percent in 2013-2014.This means that the prevalence of underweight in children fell by almost 13 percentage points between 2005-2006 and 2013-2014.
India no longer ranks second-to-last in the world when it comes to children being underweight. Instead, it has moved to the 120th spot amongst 128 countries. This has brought about a decline in the GHI score by 26 percent or 6.4 points. It has also outpaced the drop seen in other South Asian countries during this period. India has been upgraded from the category with "alarming" to "serious" hunger issues.
What has improved the hunger situation in India?
India improved its score following the government roll-out and expansion of several programmes in 2006 that target causes of under-nutrition, including the Integrated Child Development Services Programme and the National Rural Health Mission. The Supreme Court also appointed a commission to monitor the delivery of food-based programmes.Indirect factors that contributed to less hunger in India included the National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme, a rural job programme, and reforms to the Public Distribution System that distributes food to the poor.
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