Poverty Current Affairs - 2019
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The Global Hunger Index (GHI) is jointly published by Concern worldwide and Welthungerhilfe. The score if the index is calculated by the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI). It measures and tracks hunger at regional, national and global levels. The 2019 Global Hunger Index measures hunger of 117 countries. India was ranked 102nd and was the lowest ranked among ranked among South Asian countries. The rest were ranked 66, 94, etc. Especially, India was far behind as compared to the BRICS nations.
The GHI score is based on the proportion of country’s child population that is undernourished, children who are under 5 years of age and have insufficient weight for their height, Infant Mortality Rate (IMR under 5 years old children) and children whose height is not commensurate to their age
Key findings of the report
- India was at rank 93 in 2015 and has slipped places terribly
- Pakistan had pulled ahead and was at rank 94.
- Among the BRICS nations, Brazil topped on 18th rank, followed by Russia on 22nd, China on 25th, followed by South Africa (59), Sri Lanka (66), Nepal (73), Bangladesh (88), Pakistan (94), and India (102).
- India’s child wasting is extremely high at 20.8%
- Only 9.6% of children (6 to 23 months) were fed minimum acceptable diet
The report praised Bangladesh and Nepal for their progresses.
Tags: Acute Hunger • Global Hunger Index • Global Hunger Index 2019 • Hunger • IMR
In its election manifesto for the Lok Sabha Elections 2019, the Congress party has announced a Minimum Income scheme Nyuntam Aay Yojna (Nyay) as a surgical strike against poverty.
Key Facts about the Proposed Scheme
- The Nyay scheme is targeted towards 5 crore families who are the poorest 20 per cent in India.
- Nyay scheme guarantees each family a cash transfer of Rs. 72,000 a year and as far as possible the money will be transferred to a bank account of a woman in the family.
- There will a design phase (3 months), followed by pilot and testing phases (6-9 months) before the rollout of the plan.
- The scheme will be implemented in phases and the estimated cost will be less than 1 per cent of the GDP in the first year, and less than 2 per cent of the GDP in the second year and thereafter.
- As the nominal GDP grows and the families move out of poverty, the cost will decline as a proportion of the GDP.
- If brought to power, Congress announces the appointment of an independent panel of economists, social scientists and statisticians to oversee the design, testing, rollout and implementation of the programme. The programme will move from one stage to the other only after a go-ahead from the panel.
- The Nyay scheme would be a joint scheme of the central and state governments.
- Nyay scheme will be funded through new revenues and rationalisation of expenditure. Current merit subsidy schemes that are intended to achieve specific objectives will be continued.
Economists say that income-support schemes of this type cannot coexist with subsidies on account of the resultant fiscal burden. On a standalone basis, the proposed scheme, for 5 crore households, will add 1.9 per cent of GDP to the fiscal deficit and the projected outlay could be higher than India’s health budget estimated at about 1.4 per cent of GDP.