NEW DELHI: One-third of the global extreme poor lived in India as of 2010, the largest share for a country, the latest UN Millennium Development Goals report has said. In South Asia, poverty rates fell by an average of one percentage point annually — from 51 per cent in 1990 to 30 per cent two decades later. In South Asia, the proportion of the extreme poor increased from 23 per cent to 42 per cent. The trend, if it continues, will be insufficient to meet the target of halving the proportion of population without access to basic sanitation by 2015. Close to 60 per cent of the 1 billion who defecate in the open live in India, the report added.
As per the data, India also had the highest child mortality rate in 2012 with 1.4 million children dying before the age of five. In terms of child nutrition, despite steady progress, 30 per cent of children below age five were underweight in South Asia.
The report was released here by Union Minister of Minority Affairs Dr Najma Heptullah on Wednesday. She said several problem areas had been identified by the government before the report’s release.