The Republic@70: India slipping on most of the global indexes--from democracy & hunger to happiness
The Economist released its annual Democracy Index of the state of democracy in 165 independent states and two territories. India dropped ten places in the ranking and slipped to the 51st place
India is a weaker democracy than it was a year ago.
On January 22, The Economist released its annual Democracy Index that provides a snapshot of the state of democracy in 165 independent states and two territories. India dropped ten places in the ranking and slipped to the 51st place. India’s 2019 score is also the lowest since The Economist began compiling figures on global democracy in 2006.
India also dropped two places on a global Press Freedom Index, to be ranked 140th out of 180 countries in the annual Reporters Without Borders (RSF) analysis released in April last year. RSF found violent attacks in India leading to at least six Indian journalists being killed in the line of their work last year. It also found an alarming rate of coordinated hate campaigns on social networks against journalists who criticise the Government or Hindutva.
Georgetown University’s Institute for Women, Peace and Security (GIWPS) released its second report on Women, Peace, and Security Index in November, in which India ranked 133 out of 167 countries. Spectator Index ranked India as the fifth most dangerous country in the world to live in. A Thomson Reuters Foundation survey placed India as the most dangerous country for women.
On the Global Hunger Index, 2019, India ranked 102 out of 117 countries, below Nepal, Bangladesh and Pakistan. At the same time, the Human Development Index, 2019, released by the United Nations Development Programme, India figured at the 129th position.
India’s healthy life expectancy at birth is a mere 59.3 years, lower than that of Cambodia, Nepal and Rwanda. Vulnerable employment in India, or the percentage of employed people engaged as unpaid family workers and own account workers (self-employed) is 77.5% for India, compared to 57.5% for Bangladesh.
India ranked 49 on the Poverty index, with more than 36 crore Indians still unable to afford two square meals a day, which is why the World Bank continues to bracket India with Nicaragua and Honduras. On an average, even people in war-torn Libya and sanctions-plagued Cuba continue to earn more than Indians
In the World Happiness Report, India slipped down seven positions in 2019, to 140 from 133 in 2018 based on factors like social support, income, freedom, trust, health and generosity. India slipped down ten places since 2018 to be ranked 68th in the annual Global Competitiveness Index in 2019. The index ranks 140 nations on the basis of indicators including infrastructure, macroeconomic stability, health, skills, business dynamism, and innovation capability.
India’s rank also slipped five places to 141 among 163 countries, compared to the previous year in the Global Peace Index, 2019. The index, released by an Australian think tank, ranks countries according to their level of societal safety and security besides degree of militarisation.
As per the World Economic Forum (WEF), India slipped to 112th position in the Gender Equality Index amid increasing disparity in terms of women’s participation in the development of the country. Even in the Henley Passport Index 2020, the Indian passport is ranked 84th among 199 countries.