India moves up on Global Hunger Index 2014 : IFPRI

 

Around 162 million young children are still suffering from chronic under-nutrition.

 

According to the 2014 Global Hunger Index, released by International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), India now ranks 55th out of 76 countries—ahead of Bangladesh and Pakistan , but behind Nepal and Sri Lanka . Progress on child underweight has helped India ’s 2014 GHI score to fall by 26% to 17.8 since the 2005 GHI. India is no longer in the category with “alarming” hunger and has moved to “serious”. The prevalence of underweight in children has fallen by almost 13% from 43.5% in 2005–2006 to 30.7% in 2013–2014. India no longer ranks second-to-last in the world on underweight in children, instead, it has moved to 120th rank amongst 128 countries.

 

The report said that India has improved its score following government roll-out and expansion of several programs that target causes of under-nutrition, including the Integrated Child Development Services program and the National Rural Health Mission . The Supreme Court of India also appointed a commission to monitor the delivery of food-based programs. Indirect factors that contributed to less hunger in India may have included the National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme—a rural jobs program—and reforms to the Public Distribution System that distributes food to the poor.

 

Source: PHD Research Bureau, Compiled from 2014 Global Hunger Index

 

Overall, the 2014 GHI scores for Asia were better than the 1990 GHI scores. For instance, the 2014 GHI score fell by 54% in East and Southeast Asia, and by 41% in South Asia . South Asia saw the steepest absolute decline in its score, amounting to more than 12 points. South Asia had the second-highest 2014 GHI regional score—18.1. South Asia reduced its GHI score by 3 points between 1990 and 1995, mainly through a decline of almost 9%in underweight in children. Following a 10-year slowdown, the region has made considerable progress again since 2005. Several Southeast Asian and South Asian countries showed dramatically improved scores since 1990,including Vietnam , Cambodia , Thailand , and Bangladesh . At Global level, the state of hunger in developing countries as a group has improved since 1990, falling by 39%, according to the 2014 GHI. Despite progress made, the level of hunger in the world is still “serious,” with 805 million people continuing to go hungry. From the 1990 GHI to the 2014 GHI, 26 countries have reduced their scores by 50% or more. In terms of absolute progress, comparing the 1990 GHI and the 2014 GHI, Angola , Bangladesh , Cambodia , Chad , Ghana , Malawi , Niger , Rwanda , Thailand , and Vietnam saw the biggest improvements in scores. Levels of hunger are “extremely alarming” or “alarming” in 16 countries, with most of the countries with “alarming” GHI scores belonging to Africa .

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