Monday, June 5, 2023

Global Hunger Index does not show true picture of India: Women and Child Development Minister Smriti Irani

new Delhi: The government on Wednesday said that the Global Hunger Index (GHI) ranking India 107th among 121 countries in 2022 does not reflect the true picture of India.

In a written reply in the Rajya Sabha, Women and Child Development Minister Smriti Irani said the report is neither accurate nor representative of the prevailing hunger in any country.

Irani said, “The Global Hunger Index (GHI) does not show a true picture of India as it is a flawed measure of ‘hunger’. It should not be taken at face value as it is neither appropriate nor prevalent in any country is representative of hunger.” In response to a question by Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) MP Manoj Kumar Jha.

The minister said that of the four indicators for the GHI, only one – undernourishment – is directly related to hunger.

“The two indicators, namely, stunting and wasting are the result of complex interaction of various other factors like use of sanitation, genetics, environment and food intake apart from hunger, which are taken as causative/consequence factors of stunting and wasting in GHI Moreover, there is hardly any evidence that the fourth indicator, namely child mortality, is a result of hunger,” Irani said.

Responding to a question on malnutrition deaths among children, Irani said malnutrition is not a direct cause of death in children under five years of age, but it can increase morbidity and mortality by reducing resistance to infection .

Stating that malnourished children are more vulnerable to any infection than normal children, the minister said that there is no separate data available regarding child mortality due to malnutrition.

According to the Sample Registration System (SRS) statistical report published by the Office of the Registrar General of India, the under-5 mortality rate (per 1000 live births) has decreased from 35 in 2019 to 32 in 2020.

Referring to the National Food Security Act, under which 75 per cent of the rural population and 50 per cent of the urban population is to be covered, Irani said that against the targeted coverage of 81.35 crore persons in the 2011 Census, states/UTs had earlier Already 80.03 crore persons have been identified. ,

The minister also referred to government programs like Poshan Abhiyaan, which focuses on nutrition of children, adolescent girls, pregnant women and lactating mothers through Anganwadis.

According to data provided by the ministry, 18.7 per cent of women and 16.2 per cent of men in India have a body mass index below normal.

According to the National Family Health Survey-5 (2019-21), about 35.5 per cent children under the age of five are stunted, 19.3 per cent are ‘stunted’, which means they have low weight for age ratio, 32.1 per cent less of weight, and 3.4 percent are overweight.

(This report is published as part of an auto-generated syndicated wire feed. No editing has been done to the headline or body by ABP Live.)

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