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India lifted 271 mn people out of poverty between 2006 and 2016: UN

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United Nations: India lifted 271 million people out of poverty between 2006 and 2016, recording the fastest reductions in the multidimensional poverty index values during the period with strong improvements in areas such as “assets, cooking fuel, sanitation and nutrition”, a report by the United Nations said.

The 2019 global Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI) from the UN Development Programme (UNDP), the Oxford Poverty and Human Development Initiative (OPHI) was released .

The report said that in the 101 countries studied–31 low income, 68 middle income and 2 high income–1.3 billion people are “multidimensionally poor”, which means that poverty is defined not simply by income, but by a number of indicators, including poor health, poor quality of work and the threat of violence.

 

The report identifies 10 countries, with a combined population of around 2 billion people, to illustrate the level of poverty reduction, and all of them have shown statistically significant progress towards achieving Sustainable Development Goal 1, namely ending poverty “in all its forms, everywhere”.

The 10 countries are Bangladesh, Cambodia, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, Haiti, India, Nigeria, Pakistan, Peru and Vietnam.

The report said that within these 10 countries, data show that 270 million people moved out of multidimensional poverty from one survey to the next.

“This progress was largely driven by South Asia. In India, there were 271 million fewer people in poverty in 2016 than in 2006, while in Bangladesh the number dropped by 19 million between 2004 and 2014,” it said.

The report noted that of the 10 selected countries for which changes over time were analysed, India and Cambodia reduced their MPI values the fastest—and they did not leave the poorest groups behind.

India’s MPI value reduced from 0.283 in 2005-06 to 0.123 in 2015-16.

Noting the examples of pro-poor reduction, where the poorest regions improved the fastest, the report said Jharkhand in India reduced the incidence of multidimensional poverty from 74.9 per cent in 2005-06 to 46.5 per cent in 2015-16.

Mondol Kiri and Rattanak Kiri in Cambodia reduced it from 71 per cent to 55.9 per cent between 2010 and 2014.

Ethiopia, India and Peru significantly reduced deprivations in all 10 indicators, namely nutrition, sanitation, child mortality, drinking water, years of schooling, electricity, school attendance, housing, cooking fuel and assets.

In 2005-2006, the population in India living in multidimensional poverty stood at about 640 million people (55.1 per cent) and this reduced to 369 million people (27.9 per cent) living in poverty in 2015-16. India saw significant reductions in number of people who are multi-dimensionally poor and deprived in each of the 10 indicators over this time period.

India reduced deprivation in nutrition from 44.3 per cent in 2005-06 to 21.2 per cent in 2015-16, child mortality dropped from 4.5 per cent to 2.2 per cent, people deprived of cooking fuel reduced from 52.9 per cent to 26.2 per cent, deprivation in sanitation from 50.4 per cent to 24.6 per cent, those deprived of drinking water reduced from 16.6 per cent to 6.2 per cent.

Furthermore, people gained access to electricity as deprivation was reduced from 29.1 per cent to 8.6 per cent, housing from 44.9 per cent to 23.6 per cent and assets deprivation from 37.6 per cent to 9.5 per cent.

The trends in these 10 countries also shone a light on where poverty reduction had been uneven, despite the good progress overall, it said.

“In all 10 countries rural areas are poorer than urban areas. In Cambodia, Haiti, India and Peru poverty reduction in rural areas outpaced that in urban areas–demonstrating pro-poor development–and in Bangladesh and Democratic Republic of Congo poverty fell at the same speed in rural and urban areas,” it added.


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Non-Gandhi chief will cause Congress to split within 24 hours: Natwar Singh

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New Delhi: With the Congress leadership in limbo after the resignation of Rahul Gandhi, party veteran Natwar Singh joined the chorus backing Priyanka Gandhi Vadra for the top post, adding that having a non-Gandhi at the helm will cause the party to split.

Praising Priyanka for her visit to Sonbhadra to meet victims of a firing incident, the former external affairs minister told ANI that she is capable of handling the party. “You must have witnessed what she did in a village in Uttar Pradesh. It was amazing. She stayed there and achieved what she wanted to,” he said.

Singh suggested that Rahul’s decision of a having someone from outside the Gandhi family as the party chief will have to be reversed.

 

On being asked if Priyanka would be elected as the party president, the Congressman said, “It will depend on Priyanka because her brother (Rahul Gandhi) had said that nobody from the Gandhi family will become the Congress president. Now, the family will have to reverse the decision and only they can do it.”

Earlier, Anil Shastri, son of former prime minister Lal Bahadur Shastri, had said that Priyanka Gandhi should be made the Congress president as no one other than her is “100 per cent acceptable”.

Shastri, speaking to ANI, had also warned that if somebody else is made the supremo and a section of the outfit does not accept them, chances are that the party will disintegrate.

Natwar Singh echoed similar sentiments and said that if anyone is elected from outside the Gandhi family, the Congress will split within 24 hours.

“It is unfortunate that the country’s 134-years-old party does not have a party president. I do not think apart from the Gandhi family, anyone should be elected as the president,” Singh added.

Around 50 days after Rahul stepped down as Congress president, taking moral responsibility for the humiliating defeat in the Lok Sabha elections, the grand old party is yet to finalize its new chief.

Gandhi, now a lawmaker from Wayanad in Kerala, became the ongress president in 2017. He had, earlier this month, written a lengthy four-page letter making his resignation from the post public. Taking responsibility for the drubbing in Lok Sabha polls, Rahul had said it would not be right for him to suggest a successor.

At present Congress in Goa has completely lost foot, after 10 of its MLAs switched side with the BJP. This has reduced its strength to five in the Assembly.

Similarly, in Karnataka, the situation is equally embarrassing for the party, as its coalition government with JD(S) is facing a tough time. The government had slumped into a crisis following the resignation of 16 dissident MLAs and now its survival seems to be tough.

The Congress won 52 seats in the recent general elections, which is just eight more than its 2014 Lok Sabha tally of 44.

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35 killed as lightning strikes in Uttar Pradesh

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Lucknow: As many as 35 people were killed in Uttar Pradesh due to lightning, said officials.

A day earlier, the lightning had claimed one life in the state, while two others had died of snake bites on July 18 and 20 respectively, the statement said.

Thirteen others were injured due to lightning, the statement added.

 

The lightning victims included seven each in Kanpur and Fatehpur, five in Jhansi, four in Jalaun, three in Hamirpur, two in Ghazipur and one each in Jaunpur, Pratapgarh, Kanpur Dehat and Chitrakoot, the statement added.

Among the three who died earlier, one was killed due to lightning in Deoria, while one lost his life to snake bite on in Kushinagar on Saturday.

Yet another person had died of snake bite on July 18 in Ambedkarnagar, the government statement said.

Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath expressed sorrow over the loss of lives in the state and has issued orders to the respective district magistrates to give a compensation of Rs 4 lakh to each of the families of victims.

He also directed officials to ensure that the injured persons get adequate treatment, and that there should be no laxity in execution of relief works, the statement said.

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Netanyahu to visit India in September to meet PM Modi

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Jerusalem: Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will travel to India on a day-long visit on September 9 to meet his counterpart Narendra Modi, just eight days before unprecedented repeat polls in the Jewish state.

PM Netanyahu, who created history on July 20 by becoming the longest-serving Israeli Prime Minister, surpassing Israel’s first premier David Ben-Gurion, is facing a tough political challenge as opinion polls show flagging fortunes for his ruling Likud party.

“The (Israeli) Prime Minister will be in India only for a few hours on September 9 during which he will be meeting Modi. No other significant meeting is yet on the cards but something may be worked out during the coming days, possibly a business meeting,” informed sources told news agency Press Trust of India in Jerusalem.

 

Israeli lawmakers in May voted 74-45 in favour of dissolving the 21st Knesset (Parliament) and hold an unprecedented repeat general elections on September 17 after PM Netanyahu failed to form a coalition government.

Some analysts in Israel believe that the meeting with PM Modi is meant to prop up his campaign right before the polls.

Ha’aretz columnist Yossi Verter, in an opinion piece, “Netanyahu’s Out of Luck, but He’s Hoping a Photo-op With India’s Modi Will Help”, recently argued that PM Netanyahu, who’s fighting for his personal survival ahead of a hearing before the state prosecution on several graft cases, must find a way to bounce back.

He wrote that that the PM Office in Tel Aviv is said to have reached out to their counterparts in New Delhi and requested for an invitation.

PM Netanyahu will land, meet, have his picture taken, market the visit as “very important” for Israel’s security and economic interests, complain that the leftist media ignored the trip and upload something to Facebook, the journalist wrote.

Sources said that the Indian PMO had indeed suggested the week of August 25 for the visit but the Israeli side pushed for an early September visit which has finally been confirmed for September 9, exactly sixteen years after then Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon created history by becoming the first Israeli Premier to visit India.

The first request for an invitation for PM Netanyahu to visit New Delhi was made in January during the visit of Israeli National Security Adviser Meir Ben-Sabbath to India. The two leaders were scheduled to meet on February 11 before the elections in Israel but PM Netanyahu called off his trip to New Delhi due to other engagements.

The efforts regarding the visit were renewed after the Israeli parliament was dissolved and fresh elections announced.

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