India among worst places for children well-being, study reveals

Friday, July 20, 2012
New Delhi: Though East Asia has made considerable progress in child well-being in recent years but even then India is among the worst places in the world for a child, according to the Child Development Index (CDI) released on Thursday by Save the Children, a non-profit organisation.

Child Development Index shows how India
has slipped by 12 ranks in terms of
well-being of children. Photo Credit: Save
the Children NGO
Out of the 141 countries ranked on the basis of child health, education and nutrition, India is among the 14 whose position has dropped.

Study by the same organisation shows that India has slipped by 12 ranks since 1995 and is placed 112th in the global "Child Development Index".

India (where almost three-quarters of the region’s children live) made the least progress of any country in South Asia just a 27% improvement.

Study focuses on the fact that in India, child nutrition is a substantial obstacle; almost 1 in 2 children is underweight.

Malnutrition levels are not being reduced rapidly enough; India’s enrolment indicator improved by 59% while its nutrition indicator improved by only 14%. Higher levels of economic growth in the region are not widely translating into reduced child deprivation, study revealed. 

India is also ranked the lowest among BRICS nations, the grouping that includes Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa. China is in the highest quartile, the report said, adding that in relative terms, Asia’s biggest economy is heavily investing on children. More than 40% of India’s children are moderately or severely underweight, compared with less than 5% in China.

India’s under-five mortality rate exceeds 60 out of 1,000 compared with 20 in China, the report said.
India, Congo, Pakistan, Nigeria and China account for half the world’s under-five mortality, according to the report. Experts say the report points to increasing inequity in society despite state welfare programmes such as the National Rural Health Mission and Sarva Siksha Abhiyan (education for all).
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