Deprivation Index: A State-Wise Analysis
17 Pages Posted: 17 Dec 2013
Date Written: August 16, 2010
Poverty is a social phenomenon in which a part of the society is unable to fulfill its basic necessities of life. If a substantial part of a society, as in many Third World countries, is forced to live at subsistence level, then the society is said to suffer from mass poverty. Vulnerability to death at a relatively early age, measured by the share of people expected to die before attaining the age of 40 years; poor standard of living, measured by share of people without access to (a) health services (b) to safe water, and (c) the percentage of malnourished children under five; and lack of access to knowledge, measured by the share of adult population that is illiterate, are the three major kinds of deprivations. As every human being has equal rights to access food, health, education, finance and technology, any index showing extent of deprivation should include all these aspects to make it relevant to policy-making. The present study is an attempt to compare Indian states’ performance using a composite deprivation index. We conduct three different assessments. In the most comprehensive assessment, we show that Bihar has the highest level of overall deprivation followed by Uttar Pradesh and Assam. Madhya Pradesh is the most deprived state from the point of view of long and healthy life. Kerala, Karnataka and Maharashtra record the lowest level of deprivation.
Keywords: Multidimensional Deprivation, Deprivation Index, Poverty, Human Development
JEL Classification: C43, I30, I32
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