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The Scourge of Hunger and Malnutrition

Policies ensuring food security and nutrition support require a renewed focus and sense of urgency.


It is a national shame that, even several decades after independence, the country has not been able to free itself from the problem of hunger and malnutrition that endangers the life and health of the population, especially that of children, women, and vulnerable groups. The global hunger index (GHI) published this year has used four indicators—namely undernourishment, child wasting, child stunting, and child mortality—in order to assess the performance of countries in terms of reducing the problem of hunger. This index places India as one among the countries that experience “serious” levels of hunger.

Achieving the goal of Zero Hunger by 2030, which is one of the Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations, would not only require innovative and sustained government strategies, especially with regard to interventional programmes and policies, but also a firm resolve to deliver the desired results. The GHI measures and maps hunger across countries in order to ensure that this goal is realised. In India, notwithstanding the enactment of the National Food Security Act, 2013 and the build-up of foodgrain stocks over the years, the report reveals that debilitating hunger continues to persist, imperilling the basic right to adequate and sufficient food. This, at a time when some of the neighbouring South Asian countries have fared much better.

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Updated On : 12th Nov, 2019


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