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Tuesday, September 14, 2010

The Scores Are In.

Action Aid today released their research report titled "Who is Really Fighting Hunger?", analyzing how different countries are faring in terms of achieving the Millennium Development Goal of halving hunger. Here are a few highlights, from an India perspective:

  • Out of 28 poor countries, India is ranked 21st (best to worst ranking). Our overall score is 30/100, and grade is D (best A - worst E).
  • The bottom 12 countries are going backwards on hunger fighting. i.e., More people are going hungry now than when the goals were conceived.
  • With the number of hungry people having increased between 1990 and 2005 by about 53 million, it is predicted that India will not have halved hunger until 2083 - nearly 70 years after the MDG target date.
Not everyone is like India, though. Malawi has reduced the number of people living on food handouts from 4.5 million to 150,000 in just five years. Brazil has halved the number of underweight children in less than 10 years. Our perceived-to-be-direct-competitor China will meet its hunger goal five years early. 

Agricultural reforms, support to the small farmer, better public distribution system, women empowerment in agriculture are some remedies that Action Aid suggests for India.

While these are certainly necessary, I believe that another absolutely critical component in succeeding in the fight against hunger is for the shining half of India to truly wake up to this mammoth problem and do whatever they can to lift off from hunger their not-so-shining, starving brethren.

1 comment:

  1. Article in today's Guardian about the research findings above: