India’s global poverty rank improves


  • India’s Multidimensional Poverty (MDP) has dropped significantly, largely as a result of the performance of five key southern States (Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Telangana and Andhra Pradesh.)
  • Between 2005-06 to 2015-16, poverty level came down from 55% to 21%, improving the country’s MDP ranking.
  • Following the drop-in poverty levels, India moved to the 26th rank from its earlier 54, in a decade, among 102 developing countries with MDP.

Facts & Figures:

  • While the national average is 21%, in the five southern States (Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Telangana and Andhra Pradesh) the average MDP is 9%. However, poverty levels have dropped in all States.
  • Kerala has an MDP of 1%, Tamil Nadu (6%), Karnataka (11%), Telangana (14%) and Andhra Pradesh (13%) are also significantly low.
  • Bihar is the poorest State with 43% incidence of poverty.
  • Jharkhand (36%), Uttar Pradesh (31%), Rajasthan (31%) and Odisha (29%) are also above the national average (21%),
  • Of 640 districts, 31 districts — all in eastern or central India — have over 50% MDP.
  • The top five districts with the largest prevalence of MDP are in Shravasti, Baharaich and Balrampur in Uttar Pradesh, and Alirajpur and Jhabua in Madhya Pradesh.
  • Chhattisgarh, which is affected by Left Wing insurgency, has done well, bringing down its poverty level from 71% to 22%.

Multidimensional Poverty (MDP)

  • MDP is “an international measure of acute poverty” based on three key categories-
    (a) Health
    (b) Education and
    (c) Living standards

Global Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI)

  • MPI was developed in 2010 by the Oxford Poverty & Human Development Initiative (OPHI) and the United Nations Development Programme.
  • It replaced the previous Human Poverty Index.
  • The global MPI is released annually by OPHI and the results published on its website.
  • The index uses the same three dimensions as the Human Development Index: health, education, and standard of living.


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