India was ranked 97th last year. The country’s hunger problem is driven by high child malnutrition, and underlines the need for stronger commitment to the social sector, the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) said in its report.
According to the report, India’s wasting rate hasn’t substantially improved over the last 25 years, even though the child stunting rate has improved over this period.
AVAILABILITY OF FOOD
The availability of solid food with breast milk for young children (when they transition from exclusive breastfeeding) declined from 52.7 per cent to 42.7 per cent.
The proportion of children between six and 23 months who received an adequate diet was 9.6 per cent.
No more than 48.4 per cent of households had access to improved sanitation facilities; sanitation is an important factor in improving nutrition.
DEVELOPMENT PROGRAMS YET TO ACHIEVE TARGET
India has implemented a “massive scale-up” of two national programs that address nutrition – the Integrated Child Development Services and the National Health Mission – but these have yet to achieve adequate coverage, IFPRI quoting Menon’s report said.
INDIA BETTER THAN PAKISTAN
India ties with Djibouti and Rwanda for the 100th rank, and with a score of 31.4 of 100 (with 0 being best and 100 the worst) but its neighbours in South Asia, Nepal, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh are doing better than India. Only Pakistan and Afghanistan are doing worse than India.
THE RISE OF NEPAL
Nepal’s GHI score was also in the alarming category in 2000, but has now ranks 72 (in the serious category), verging on moderate rise, IFPRI said in the report.
HOW NEPAL COUNTERED HUNGER PROBLEM
Nepal’s remarkable reduction in child stunting between 2001 and 2011 is associated with, and likely attributable to, increased household assets (a proxy for household wealth), increased maternal education levels, improved sanitation levels, and implementation and utilisation of health and nutrition programs, including antenatal and neonatal care.