Poverty has fallen, but social inequality in India has risen: report


Social inequalities have increased dramatically in India since 2000, according to the Competitiveness Roadmap for [email protected] report.

The report states that while poverty has decreased, “inequality has increased considerably, especially since 2000”. “This trend has been in contrast to the dynamics globally and in other emerging economies,” the report notes.

India ranks poorly in almost all dimensions of social progress such as environmental quality, gender equality and quality of basic education compared to other countries.

Read also | What does it mean to be poor, pregnant and helpless in India?

According to the report, the rise in inequality has been most pronounced in urban areas. “Inequality appears largely driven by rising wealth and income at the top of Indian urban society,” the report said. On the overall measure of social progress, India ranks 115th out of 163 countries, slightly below its GDP per capita ranking.

“India is a lower-middle-income economy, with an average GDP per capita of around $2,000 (current prices) / $7,200 (purchasing power). Its prosperity level stands at 18 .5% of the world average, compared to less than 6.5% of the world average in the early 1990s, when economic reforms began.

India has been one of the world leaders in sustainable prosperity growth – only China, Myanmar, Vietnam and Laos have, over the past three decades, achieved higher prosperity growth and more stable – the nation still faces significant poverty. “About 20% of its population lives below the poverty line. But the absolute number of poor people in India remains large, with 95% of the population classified as poor or low income,” he said.

When it comes to gender inequality, India has made progress in recent years but continues to rank very low globally.

“Indian women have made great strides in education and now have higher enrollment rates at all levels than men. But there are still 186 million women who are unable to read or write a simple sentence in any language, and the literacy rate for women is at 65%, more than 15 percentage points behind men,” the report noted.

Furthermore, the report mentions that Indian women have also seen their life expectancy exceed that of men and the mortality rate for girls under five has dropped to a level only slightly above that of boys. “Women continue to have more limited access to health care, and the proportion of girls among newborns is five percent below biological norms.”

India’s average level of prosperity is not matched by its social progress, the report adds. “Those components affecting the quality of life that are not directly related to GDP. Again, government policy has indeed targeted ‘ease of living’ but the data so far shows that India is both lagging behind in prosperity over overall social progress, and in particular in areas related to environmental quality, health care and inclusion.”

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