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Business News/ Economy / The fangs of poverty that India is fighting, in charts
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The fangs of poverty that India is fighting, in charts

India lifted 415 million people out of ‘multidimensional poverty’ between 2005 and 2021, according to a UNDP index.

Photo: MintPremium
Photo: Mint

Cooking fuel, housing and nutrition were the three biggest areas of deprivation among Indians in the latest “multidimensional poverty index" (MPI) released by the United Nations Development Programme this week. An estimated 13.9%, 13.6%, and 11.8%, respectively, of Indians were classified as deprived on these three metrics. However, around 415 million Indians exited multidimensional poverty between 2005 and 2021, the report reiterated its estimate from last year’s index. The MPI measures the impact of poverty beyond money (hence, ‘multidimensional’): it looks at metrics across health, education and living standards. Overall, 16.4% of Indians (around 231 million) are estimated to be “multidimensionally poor" based on data from the National Family Health Survey of 2019-21—down from 55% in 2005-06.

NOTE: Each indicator—health, education and living standards—is weighted equally. Their sub-indicators (equally weighted within each indicator) are undernourishment and child mortality (health); years of schooling and school attendance (education); and availability of cooking fuel, sanitation, drinking water, electricity, housing, and household assets (living standards). A person who is at least 33% deprived overall (based on weighted deprivation score across 10 sub-indicators) is said to be “multidimensionally poor". (Note that being undernourished counts for three times as much as what lacking electricity at home does, as per the weights.) The data covers 110 mostly low- and middle-income countries, and is based on local surveys (only 41 had data from 2019 or later). India’s data, based on NFHS 2019-21, had already been updated in the 2022 index.

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Published: 13 Jul 2023, 08:47 PM IST
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