Sunday, 14 August 2011


·        Progress towards the eight Millennium Development Goals (MDG) is measured through 21 targets & 60 official indicators.
·       This report presents an accounting to date of how far the (developing) world has come in meeting the using data available as of June 2011.
·        Regional & sub-regional figures presented in this report are complied by member of the United Nations Inter-Agency & Expert Group on MDG Indicators (IAEG). Data are typically drawn from official statistics provided by governments to the international agencies responsible for the indicator.
·        Based on the progress in various indicators since 1990, the report places the countries in four   categories:
1)      Early achiever – Already achieved the 2015 target
2)      On-track – Expected to meet the target by 2015
3)      Off-track: slow – Expected to meet the target, but after 2015
4)      Off-track: no progress/regressing – Stagnating or slipping backwards

TARGET: Halve, between 1990 & 2015, the proportion of people whose income is less than $1 a day.
·        In India, the change in India for population living below $ 1.25/day has changed from 49.4% in 1994 to 41.6% in2005. 
·        Undernourishment in India is moderately high (15 to 24%) & India has been slow in reducing the extent of hunger.
·        The change in the India for children under-5 who are underweight has been 53.4% in 1993 to 47.8% in 2005.
·         For this MDG India is placed in the third category.

Ensure that, by 2015, children everywhere, boys & girls alike, will be able to complete a full course of primary schooling.
·        India has shown a change from 85% to 95% in the enrollment in primary education ratio from 2000 to 2007.
·        India is an early achiever for this MDG.
·        However the data includes only registered refugees. Factors like discrimination & inability to understand the language of instruction pose problems for refugees in getting education.
·        Ironically the dropout rates are high & from 1999 to 2005 the change in the ratio of reaching the last grade has only been from 62% to 65.8%


Eliminate gender disparity in all levels of education no later than 2015.
·        India is an early achiever for gender parity in the primary education with the percentage change from 1991 to 2007 being 0.76 & 0.97 respectively.
·        It's on-track for gender parity in secondary education with the percentage change from 1999 to 2007 being 0.70 & 0.86 respectively.
·        However the progress for gender parity in tertiary education is slow with the percentage change from 1991 to 2007 being 0.54 & 0.70 respectively.
·        In Southern Asia the participation rates in tertiary education are skewed in favour of boys.

Reduce by two-thirds, between 1990 & 2015, the under-five mortality rate.
·        India is slow in the process of bringing down the under-5 & infant mortality & is placed in the third category.
·        Undernourishment & lack of proper post-natal care are sighted as reasons for the slow progress.
·        The under-5 mortality rate for per 1,000 live births has changed from 116 in1990 to 69 in 2008.
·        The infant mortality rate for per 1,000 live births for the same years has changed from 83 to 52.
·        A mother's education is the key to determine the probability of her child's survival in the first five years i.e. more the education, better the chances.
·        Recommendations to better the figures- increasing the accountability of health systems at the local level & encouraging innovations to make critical services available to the poor.


Reduce by three quarters, between 1990 & 2015, the maternal mortality ratio.
·        This is another MDG where India is placed in the third category.
·        India lags behind in skilled birth attendance (from34.2% in 1993 to 46.6% in 2006) in & proper antenatal care (from 61.9% in 1993 to 74.2% in 2006).
·        Maximum maternal deaths caused by obstetric haemorrhage- mostly just after or during the deliver, followed by sepsis, eclampsia, & complications of unsafe abortion.
·        Southern Asia as a whole saw an increase from 32% in 1990 to 50% in 2009 in the proportion of deliveries attended by skilled personnel.


Have halted by 2015 & begun to reverse the spread of HIV/AIDS.
·        India is placed in the first category for reduction in HIV prevalence, which has gone down from 0.5% in 2001 to 0.3% in 2007.
·        The TB incidence rate per 100,000 has remained at a stable 170 from 1990 to 2008 in India & the country gets a place in the second category for the same.
·        The TB prevalence rate per 100,000 has gone down from 340 in 1990 to 190 in 2008 & India stands in the first category.
·        In India, the number of physicians available per 10,000 population is just 6.


Integrate the principles of sustainable development into country policies & programmes & reverse the loss of environmental sources.
·        From a forest cover of 21.5% in 1990, India's forest cover increased to 22.5% in 2005.
·       The protected area (% territorial area) has gone up from 4.79 in 1990 to 5.12 in 2009.
·       The percentage of population in India receiving safe drinking water has gone up from 72 to 88 from 1990 to 2008.
·       Though the percentage of population having access to basic sanitation has gone up from 18 in 1990 to 31 in 2008, but still India is places in the third category as not even half the country has basic sanitation facilities.
·       Almost two-thirds of the people who practice open sanitation reside in Southern Asia.

In cooperation with the private sector, make available the benefits of new technologies especially information & communications.
·        By the end of 2010, 90% of the world's inhabitants were covered by a mobile cellular signal.
·        The number of Internet users continues to expand. However, penetration levels in the developing world remain relatively low, at 21% by the end of 2010.
·        Globally two out of three people are not using the Internet.

ANJALI GOPALAN, Executive Director of the Delhi based non-profit Naz Foundation (India) Trust says, “I think they are being over congratulatory. Though yes in some states the incidence rate has gone down but it is increasing in the other states & especially the northern belt. This is because there is not a proper mechanism to provide people with the antiretroviral treatment (ART). At one level we can pat our backs, but the picture is still not so gleeful.”
The National AIDS Control Organisation's (NACO) website says:

“In terms of geographical break-up, 118 districts have HIV prevalence more than 1 percent among mothers attending ante-natal clinics. The 2006 estimates indicate that the epidemic has stabilised or seen a drop in Tamil Nadu and other southern states with a high HIV burden. Yet, new areas have seen a rise in HIV prevalence, particularly in the northern and eastern regions. Twenty-six districts have been identified with high prevalence, largely in the states of Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal, Orissa, Rajasthan and Bihar.
HIV prevalence continues to be higher among vulnerable groups. For instance, there is a significant population living with HIV and AIDS among Injection Drug Users' in four of India’s biggest cities – Chennai, Delhi, Mumbai and Chandigarh. Young people are at greater risk, with the under-15 category accounting for 3.8 percent of all HIV infections, as against 3 percent in 2002.
Between 2005 and 2006, prevalence has fallen in some major states – Maharashtra from 0.80 to 0.74 percent, in Tamil Nadu from 0.47 to 0.39 percent – for instance. Yet, new areas of concern have emerged. In West Bengal, prevalence has gone up from 0.21 to 0.30 percent and in Rajasthan from 0.12 to 0.17 percent.” (Figures representative of only those who are taking treatment in public hospitals & not private hospitals)
Q) The UN report says that the incidence rates are moderately high in Southern Asia & there haven't been any major changes in the trend. Is it true for India as well?
Dr. YOGESH JAIN, associated with the Chhattisgarh based non-profit Jan Swasthya Sahyog, says, “The incidence rate has not come down & even as per the country data it is increasing & this is a cause of concern. If you ask me as a person working in Chhattisgarh, it is bad & though we could give the excuse of the cities where it is not so bad, in Chhattisgarh the situation is bad.”
The Revised National Tuberculosis Control Programme (RNTCP) TB India 2011 status report says:
India is the highest TB burden country accounting for one-fifth (21%) of the global incidence (Global annual incidence estimate is 9.4 million cases out of which it is estimated that 2 million cases are from India.) India is 17th among 22 high burden countries in terms of TB incidence rates.”

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