Though, India has achieved the goals of poverty reduction, slum development and access to water three years ahead of the Millennium Development Goals (MDG), it is far behind in achieving food and employment security, reveals this year’s UN report on MDG.
Though, the country has done well on the health front, it is likely to miss the goal of reducing maternal death at the current rate which is one maternal death every 10 minute.
The current Maternal Mortality Rate (MMR) of India is 212 per one lakh live births and it is unlikely that it would reach the goal of reducing it to 109 per one lakh live births by 2015.
“The government needs to ensure the availability of auxiliary nurses and midwives closer to the homes of women who are delivering,” said Frederika Meijer, UN India Representative. “Poor child nutrition remained a massive challenge for India where 42 per cent children under five years of age are underweight,” said economist Jayati Ghosh while releasing the MDG Report 2012 in India.
Highlighting the MDG report in Indian context, Ghosh pointed out that India is inhabited by largest population of nutritionally deprived in the world.
She underlined the bleak situation in the employment sector and cautioned that to achieve the goal programmes like MGNREGA more spending would be required.
However, despite widespread hunger, malnutrition and lack of infrastructure, India is doing well on health front. India’s progress on the MDG of combating HIV and Aids, Malaria and TB is also satisfactory, said UN officials.
The country will also achieve MDG for Infant Mortality Rate (IMR). At the current rate of 47 per 1,000 live births, it is most likely to achieve 42 per 1,000 live birth in 2015.
As far as the MDG for education is concerned, India has significant gains in enrollment in schools, but dropout rates are higher which is even worse than Africa. The dropout rate is very high among backward sections of society, SC, ST and OBC, pointed out Ghosh.