Global Hunger Index: India down 45 ranks since 2014, situation 'serious'

As per the report, India ranks below many of its neighbouring countries such as China (29th rank), Nepal (72), Myanmar (77), Sri Lank (84) and Bangladesh (88).

The country has slipped three notches since last year's rank of 97. The index shows that more than a fifth of Indian children under the age of five are malnourished and weigh too little for their height, reported the Business Standard.

"India is ranked 100th out of 119 countries, and has the third highest score in all of Asia-only Afghanistan and Pakistan are ranked worse", IFPRI said in a statement.

Grappling with a "serious" hunger problem, India has been ranked 100th among 119 developing countries on the Global Hunger Index (GHI), behind North Korea, Bangladesh and even the besieged Iraq, but ahead of Pakistan, according to a report. In South Asia, only Pakistan is lower than India at 106.

It further stated that India's poor performance is one of the main reasons pushing the South Asia region to the worst performing category on the GHI scale this year. The report realeased on Thursday puts India at the high end of "very serious" category.

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Despite scaling up two national programmes addressing nutrition the Integrated Child Development Services and the National Health Mission India fails to address the concern, the report said.

The GHI score is a multidimensional index composed of four indicators-proportion of undernourished in the population, prevalence of child mortality, child stunting, and child wasting.

This is according to the Global Hunger Index report released by International Food Policy Research Institute. "Only three other countries in this year's GHI - Djibouti, Sri Lanka, and South Sudan - have data or estimates showing child wasting above 20 percent in the latest period (2012-16)". However, as for the prevalence of wasting in children under five years, there is, however, no improvement. "(1) the timely introduction of complementary foods for young children (that is, the transition away from exclusive breastfeeding), which declined from 52.7 percent to 42.7 percent between 2006 and 2016; (2) the share of children between 6 and 23 months old who receive an adequate diet-a mere 9.6 percent for the country; and (3) household access to improved sanitation facilities-a likely factor in child health and nutrition-which stood at 48.4 percent as of 2016".

The 2017 GHI scores show that the level of hunger in the world has decreased by 27% from the 2000 level.

However, he said that the on-going efforts are expected to make significant changes in improving the existing situation.

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