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    Rampant Poverty Hurts India’s Economic Ambitions


    by NTDTelevision

    1 823 views
    India now has 410 million people living below the U.N. estimated poverty line of $1.25 a day.

    The latest official estimates show the poverty rate has risen to over 37 percent of the population… a ten percent increase in the past six years.

    In New Delhi, thousands of slum dwellers live in cheek-by-jowl shanties next to a stinking sewer with piles of garbage strewn all around.

    People like Meena, a slum resident and mother of four, have failed to reap the benefits of India's economic growth.

    [Meena, Slum Resident]: (Hindi, female)
    "Poor will always remain poor and backward. How can the poor progress when everything is getting so expensive? For the poor providing food for the children is a massive job, any progress or improvement in the life of the poor is out of question."

    While India's economy is slowly recovering from a global recession, millions of poor in India are finding it difficult to cope with around 17 percent food price inflation.

    [Gomti Devi, Slum Resident]: (Hindi, female)
    "Everything is a struggle, everything is so expensive, it is very tough -- we are living on just one meal a day. We eat only in the evenings and have to forgo meals.”

    Experts warn that unless economic growth trickles down to the masses, India's dream of playing a major role on the world stage will remain only a dream.

    India has more than 220 million hungry and ranks 94th out of 119 countries in the Global Hunger Index.