P Chidambaram, a longtime member of Congress and a former finance minister, claimed on Tuesday that the Narendra Modi-led Central Government is in “denial mode” regarding the problems of poverty, hunger, and malnutrition. He claimed this was especially clear when it disregarded the most recent Global Hunger Index report.
India was placed 107 out of 121 nations in the most recent Global Hunger Index study, having the worst child-wasting rate in the world at 19.3%.
Following the study’s release, India rejected the Global Hunger Index 2022, claiming it had “severe methodological flaws” and “deliberately ignored” government measures to secure food security for its citizens. The Ministry of Women and Child Development emphasized in a statement that there is a sustained commitment to taint India’s image as a nation.
The Congress leader responded to India’s response to the Global Hunger Index this morning by tweeting, “The first task of any government is to overcome the challenges of poverty, hunger, and malnutrition. Sadly, the Modi government is in denial mode, as was evident when it rejected India’s 107 ranking in the Global Hunger Index.
In addition, citing information from the Global Multidimensional Poverty Index 2022 produced by UNDP and Oxford Poverty and Human Development Institute, Mr. Chidambaram stated: “UNDP and Oxford HDI have confirmed what we have said several times: that the UPA has reduced the incidence of poverty and the number of poor people in India has decreased by about 415 million over the past 15 years.”
According to the Global Multidimensional Poverty Index 2022, released on Monday, the poorest Indian states had the quickest reductions in poverty and significant decreases in all indices of deprivation.
“In India, 415 million people exited poverty between 2005/06 and 2019/21, demonstrating that the Sustainable Development Goal target 1.2 of halving the proportion of men, women, and children of all ages living in poverty in all its manifestations according to national definitions by 2030 is achievable—and at scale,” it said.
Approximately 275 million individuals living in poverty for 15 years or more did so between 2005/2006 and 2015/2016 when Congress was essentially in control, and 140 million people did so between 2015/2016 and 2019/2021, the report said.
According to a report released on Monday, 16.4% of Indians live in poverty. Mr. Chidambaram stated: “Yet, it is a stern warning to India that 16.4% of the population (22.8 crores) was still poor in 2019-20. That number worsened in the subsequent two years due to the pandemic and the lockdowns.”