Global Hunger Index: India down 45 ranks since 2014, situation 'serious'

Postado Outubro 13, 2017

Worked out by Washington-based International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), what should be of particular concern for the country's policy makers is, it ranks worse among its competing countries.

"India is ranked 100th out of 119 countries, and has the third highest score in all of Asia - only Afghanistan and Pakistan are ranked worse", IFPRI said in a statement on Thursday.

China ranked at 29th spot in the report. In South Asia, only Pakistan is lower than India at 106.

Raising the alarm on the "serious" hunger problems in the country, the report mentioned, "given that three quarters of South Asia's population reside in India, the situation in that country strongly influences South Asia's regional score".

India ties with the countries like Djibouti and Rwanda for the 100th rank, and with a score of 31.4 of 100 (with 0 being best and 100 the worst), India's 2017 GHI falls at the high end of the "serious" category. This is three notches behind last year's rank of 97 - and behind the likes of North Korea, Bangladesh, and Iraq, even if ahead of Pakistan.

Chile, Cuba and Turkey, with a score of less than 5, ranked the best among developing nations.

It adds, "According to 2015-2016 survey data, more than a fifth (21 percent) of children in India suffer from wasting". Other than India, only three countries showed child wasting above 20 percent, the reported noted. Among other three parameters used for identifying GHI, the report finds that in the prevalence of stunting in children under five years, there is a sharp decline in India from 1990-94, which it was 61.9%, to 38.4% in 2012-16.

"Even with the massive scale up of national nutrition-focused programs in India, drought and structural deficiencies have left a large number of poor in India at risk of malnourishment in 2017", said P.K. Joshi, IFPRI's South Asia director.

"While the world has committed to reaching Zero Hunger by 2030, the fact that over 20 million people are now at risk of starvation shows how far we are from realizing this vision", the report adds.

This is according to the Global Hunger Index report released by International Food Policy Research Institute. The index shows that more than a fifth of Indian children under the age of five weigh too little for their height and a third are too short for their age. The plan shows stronger commitment and greater investments in tackling malnutrition in the coming years.