BHUBANESWAR: With 32.6 per cent of its population dubbed as poor, Odisha is only behind Bihar so far as poverty headcount ratio (HCR) is concerned, the latest Economic Survey has revealed.
The Economic Survey 2013-14 mentions that Odisha along with Madhya Pradesh have the highest percentage of rural poor in the country. The rural poverty HCR for the State stands at 35.7 pc while the urban HCR is 17.3 pc.
The report, which was presented by Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley in the Parliament on Wednesday, revealed that despite being the best performing state, Bihar has displaced Odisha from the top in poverty headcount. The poverty HCR for Bihar stood at 33.7 pc.
While the all India poverty HCR was 21.9 per cent, at least five states of Odisha, Madhya Pradesh, Assam, Uttar Pradesh and Bihar recorded poverty levels which was above the national rate.
The economic plight of the State was also reflected in the monthly per capita expenditure (MPCE) as rural Odisha had the lowest spending among the states. With the MPCE of Rs 1,003, almost 57.2 pc of the expenditure of rural households was on food.
The MPCE for urban areas of the State was also low. Of the monthly per capita spending of Rs 1,941, at least 45.4 pc was on food consumption. Among others, Bihar, Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh recorded very low urban spending.
On the human development index (HDI), Odisha showed better progress in infant mortality rate (IMR) though it still counted among the states which recorded high deaths. The IMR was found to be the highest in Madhya Pradesh (56) followed by Assam (55), Odisha, and Uttar Pradesh (53 each) against a national rate of 42. The overall death rate was highest in Odisha at 8.5 pc against the national average of seven per cent.
The socio-economic index showed rural unemployment was high in Odisha. In rural pockets of the State, the unemployment was 22 per 1,000 whereas in urban Odisha, it was 35. Kerala registered the highest unemployment rate followed by Assam, Bihar, West Bengal, Haryana and Odisha.
The Economic Survey also pointed out that labour force participation rate (LFPR) of females in the age group 15-59 was low in the State, well below the all India average.
Odisha, however, fared moderately in financial inclusion. The number of offices of commercial banks stood at 3,782. In states like Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and West Bengal, their number was way above 5,000.