Columnist: Amir Bashir Qureshi II [email protected] II +91 88250 67885
T he global hunger Index (GHI) is an international tool designed to comprehensively measure and track hunger at Global, Regional and Local Levels. Global Hunger Scores are calculated each year to access the progress and setbacks in tackling the hunger in world. The Global Hunger Index shows the actual status of any country in terms of hunger among the people. It is considered that 1/3rd of the Indian Perishable goods like Rice, Pulses and sugar are getting waste, the reason behind this is lack of proper infrastructure and Supply Chain Management. The remaining portion is being distributed among the people all over India through Public Distribution Systems (PDS).The Global Hunger Index has given four point Index, through these four point index they are able to analyze the Hunger status of any country, these four indicators are:-
1. Child Wasting : – The portion of children under the age of five, who are wasted (Low weight for height).
2. Child Stunting : – The children who are under the age of five, who are stunted (Low weight for their height).
3. Child Mortality: – The mortality of the children under the age of five (Inadequate nutrition unhealthy environments).
4. Undernourishment:-The share of population that is under nourished (Lack of proper food and Caloric Intake).
The data on the above indicators are usually collected by United Nation Agencies such as Food and Agriculture Organization (F&AO),United Nation Child Education Fund (UNICEF) and World Health Organization(WHO) along with World Bank.
Current Status of India
-The Global Hunger Index 2019 puts India at 102nd rank out of 117 countries. In 2018 Indian Hunger Index was 103rd rank out of 132 countries.
-Recently conducted survey by Indian agencies comprehended that the actual figure of Indian Hunger Rate is totally different from survey conducted by international agencies.
-The first National Hunger Survey was conducted in India in 2016-18 by CNNS the third party agency. This was the first National Nutritional Survey conducted in India. The data collected for this survey was taken from the children since their birth till the age of 19 years.
-Overall data was taken for more than 1, 12,000 children and state level estimates were provided.
-According to this survey, the CNNS Shows an accelerated decline in the Stunting rate to 1.8% per annum , almost the double that of the previous decade. The following were the trends:-
a) Wasting to 17.3% (CNNS) from 21.0% (NFHS4)
b) Underweight to 33.4% (CNNS) from 35.7% (NFHS)
c) Stunting is down to 34.7% (CNNS) from 38.4% (NFHS)
According to them these improvements in nutritional indicators have been possible because of the recent government initiatives to tackle malnutrition in India.
Initiative taken by Government of India to mitigate the hunger and malnutrition in India. Some of them can be discussed as under:-
1. Pradhan Mantri Matru Vandana Yojana (PMMVY) in 2017:-
The aim of this programme is to offer the Conditional Cash Transfer scheme which is Rs. 5000 will be given to each pregnant and lactating woman. According to Government of India data more than 98.16 Lakh women beneficiaries have been benefitted till now.
2. POSHAN Abhiyan:-
This is the National Nutrition Mission launched in year 2018, which focus on first 1000 days of a child life that is near to 3 years of his age, which includes real time Adhaar Seeding for Direct Benefit transfer of Schemes, monitoring and convergence across the Ministries and Departments.
3. PAN India launch of Rota Virus Infection to prevent Diarrhea is also another initiative.
4. Mid Day Meal Scheme:-
The government launched this scheme in schools, this scheme was launched in the year 1995, which is currently catering 12, 65,000 Schools and 120,000,000 Children across India. The motive of this scheme is to provide mid day meal to the children of government schools up to class five, the government is providing Cooked Rice, Cereals and Some nutritional supplements to the children, so that they can get their nutritional growth also.
Implementation of these schemes:-
Although government has launched all these schemes to combat the Hunger Scale across India, the only hindrances in these schemes are that the lack of proper implementation at ground level. There are many obstacles being faced by every scheme during implementation are:-
1. Lack of Technological Advancements:-
The technology is considered as the back bone for the growth and development of every nation, but in India in order to implement any scheme, the technology is not taken into consideration, the government still is managing any scheme manually.
2. Lack of community knowledge:-
The first and foremost thing which every scheme faces while implementation is the society is not being sensitized regarding the particular scheme, the marketing of the scheme is not being done in an effective manner, which ultimately leads to the failure of the scheme.
3. Proper diversion of Funds:-
Even though the government is keeping the sufficient amount of funds for launching and running the scheme, but the improper allocation of funds at proper time and proper place hinders the smooth implementation of scheme.
4. Design and Management Barriers:-
The lack of clarity among scheme staff, regarding the scheme rules, and processes and requirements that an individual’s need to submit and have access to these schemes also leads to the failure of the schemes.
The lesson learnt from all these measures and schemes, we can finally conclude this that there are many schemes launched by Government of India to uplift the hunger rate in India, but there are many obstacles and hindrances which acts as a barrier between the government and actual beneficiary of the scheme, which ultimately leads to the improper implementation if the scheme and hence government remains at the back foot again in combating the hunger ratio in India, which remains ultimately high as compared to other countries.
-Ahmed E 1991, Social Security and Poor: Choices for developing countries. The World Bank Research observer 6: 105-27
-Government Schemes Lacked Proper Implementation: UPA Legacy/ Subhashish Gangopadhyay 3rd April 2009 Live Mint.
-Where the Global Hunger Index 2019 went wrong in India’s case- By ET Contributors: October 2019 Economic Times.
-Ministry of Human Resource Development-Website and Wikipedia related to Mid Day Meal Scheme.
-Convention on the Rights of Child, United Nation 20th Nov. 1989.Revived on 28th July 2013.
–Indiafoodbanking.org: Hunger in India website.