The BIMARU states of India

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This is a collection of articles archived for the excellence of their content.

The status as in 2011-14

The Times of India, Aug 13 2015

BIMARU states, Infant Mortality Rate, Underweight children, Children fully immunised, Child sex ratio and Maternal Mortality Rate; Graphic courtesy: The Times of India, Aug 13 2015

BIMARU club still has 4 states

The four BIMARU states ¬ Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh continue to lag behind, their people still enmeshed in poverty and under-development. Have a look at some signs of what is happening in these states.

First, the lives of the people in these states. In UP and Bihar, a drinking water source is within the home premises in about half the homes compared to just 35% in Rajasthan and 24% in MP.In electricity usage, Bihar is worst with just 16% of houses using it for lighting, compared to 67% in MP and Rajasthan. Over 70% of people in Bihar and MP go for open defecation because there are no toilets available.In Rajasthan and UP, this proportion is about 65% against the national average of 53%. Nearly 60% of homes in Rajasthan, Bihar and MP have no drainage system while in UP 31% have no drains.

Usage of firewood, crop residues or cow dung for cooking at home is the norm in all four states with the share of such homes ranging between 76% for Rajasthan and 89% in Bihar, compared to 66% for the whole country .Evidently , most people's lives in all four states are still in pre-modern times.

All four states have infant mortality rates ­ infants dying due to disease and malnutrition before they are a year old ­ higher than the national average, with MP worst at 54 deaths per 1,000 live births. Maternal mortality rates, that is, mothers dying while giving birth due to lack of adequate facilities, are unconscionably high in all four states with Bihar at 219 and UP at 292, as against the national average of 178. Although nationally 65% of children are fully immunized, in UP only 47% get this essential treatment and in MP just 54%. In all four states, around a third of children are underweight. The child sex ratio, which reflects female infanticide or foeticide, is the best in Bihar and the worst in Rajasthan.

What about hard economic parameters? The recent Socio-Economic & Caste Census data shows that the share of rural households in which the highest bread winner earns less than Rs 5,000 per month is around 72% in Bihar, UP and Rajasthan and 84% in MP. The national average is itself a shocking 75%.

Between 2005-06 and 2013-14, the respective economies of the states grew at an average of about 17% annually in UP and Bihar, about 15% in MP and just over 18% in Rajasthan. In short, there is nothing much to choose from as far as these indicators go.

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