Ever since taking office in 2014, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has promised the world’s second most-populous country economic success, potentially to rival its eastern neighbor, China. However, a new report suggests another area is in dire need of help: the nutritional health of mothers and children. The last time India released a comprehensive health report of that nature was in 2007. While the expected publication of the most recent surveys was expected last fall, the official report has yet to officially materialize. This has caused outrage in the international community, resulting in a development economist calling it “an absolute scandal.” The BBC was able to obtain a copy of the report, which reinforces the fact that India has higher rates of malnutrition in children and women than most African countries. While there are some major improvements in states like Maharashtra — which has seen a 24 percent drop in underweight babies — Gujarat, the state that Modi managed for the past 10 years, has some problems, such as a dramatic ratio of children who don’t have the proper vaccinations. India only spends 1 percent of its GDP on healthcare, and Modi has continued to make cuts. Investment in healthcare means an investment in the workforce and future of India.
Read the full story at the BBC.