Chhattisgarh declared poor state by NITI Ayog, tops the nation in case of malnourished people.

Chhattisgarh declared poor state by NITI Ayog, tops the nation in case of malnourished people.

Raipur: The NITI Ayog report has placed Chhattisgarh in the seventh position of the list of the poorest states of the country. The report said that 29.91 percent of the total population is living Below the Poverty Line (BPL) in Chhattisgarh. Chhattisgarh has topped the list as far as cases of malnourished people are concerned. Bihar tops the list of poverty states followed by Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, and Uttar Pradesh.

NITI Aayog vice-chairman Rajiv Kumar said that this baseline report of India's first national Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI) measure is based on the reference period of the National Family Health Survey (NFHS) for 2015-16. In its first MPI report, NITI Aayog said that Bihar, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh and Uttar Pradesh were found to be the poorest states in the country. They are followed by Madhya Pradesh and Meghalaya in the index.

The report reads that Bihar has 51.91 per cent of the population, followed by Jharkhand stands second with 42.16 per cent, Uttar Pradesh stands third at 37.79 per cent, Madhya Pradesh stands fourth at 36.65 per cent and Meghalaya stands fifth at 32.67 per cent. Among the Union Territories, Dadra and Nagar Haveli (27.36 per cent), Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh (12.58), Daman and Diu (6.82 per cent) and Chandigarh (5.97 per cent) have emerged as the poorest in the country.

Pondicherry, which has 1.72 per cent of its population poor, Lakshadweep (1.82 per cent), Andaman and Nicobar Islands (4.30 per cent) and Delhi (4.79 per cent) fared better.

Kerala is among the lowest poverty-recording states across the country, with only 0.71 per cent of its population falling into that category, followed by Goa (3.76 per cent), Sikkim (3.82 per cent), Tamil Nadu (4.89 per cent) and Punjab (5.59 per cent). Bihar has the highest number of malnourished people, followed by Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, and Chhattisgarh. Bihar is also at the bottom of various other categories including percentage of population deprived of maternal health, percentage of population deprived of schooling, school attendance, and percentage of population deprived of cooking fuel and electricity.

The report further reads that the development of India's National Multidimensional Poverty Index is an important contribution towards establishing a public policy tool that monitors multidimensional poverty, informs evidence-based and focused interventions, enabling it to make sure that no one is left behind. The national MPI measure has been constructed using 12 key components that cover areas such as health and nutrition, education and standard of living. The report states that the National MPI, a holistic measure that defines poverty in simple terms, as a reduction in critical and basic standards of health, education, and living standards, is based on the way poverty has been historically understood and conceptualized.

In early 2020, the Cabinet Secretariat had identified 29 global indices for monitoring, analysis, and evaluation with the aim of improving India's position in the global rankings. Under this mandate, also known as the Global Index for Reform and Development (GIRG) mandate, NITI Aayog was identified as the nodal agency for the MPI.