The United Indian
The United Indian

A Remarkable Movement in India’s Poverty Reduction As 415 Million People Move Out of Poverty

India poverty reduction | India registers remarkable reduction in poverty with 415 million people coming out of it in 15 years: United Nations

Building A Wealthier & Healthier Future

Jul 12, 2023

India, the world's most populous nation, has achieved a remarkable feat in poverty reduction. According to the latest update of the global Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI) released by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Oxford Poverty and Human Development Initiative (OPHI) at the University of Oxford, a total of 415 million people moved out of poverty in India within just 15 years from 2005/2006 to 2019/2021. This achievement highlights India's significant progress in improving the living conditions of its population. 


Rapid Progress and Success Stories 

India is among 25 countries that successfully halved their global MPI values within 15 years, demonstrating that rapid progress in poverty reduction is attainable. Some of the other countries that achieved this feat include Cambodia, China, Congo, Honduras, Indonesia, Morocco, Serbia, and Vietnam. This collective success showcases the potential for poverty eradication through dedicated efforts and effective policies. 

The report by UNDP and OPHI indicates that India’s poverty reduction is indeed achievable. However, the lack of comprehensive data during the period of the COVID-19 pandemic poses challenges in assessing immediate prospects. 


India poverty reduction


Significant Decline in Poverty Incidence 

Owing to India’s regular poverty reduction efforts, 415 million individuals were lifted out of poverty from 2005/2006 to 2019/2021, resulting in a substantial reduction in poverty incidence. The percentage of people living in multidimensional poverty decreased from 55.1 percent in 2005/2006 to 16.4 percent in 2019/2021. In 2005/2006, approximately 645 million people in India lived in multidimensional poverty. This number declined to about 370 million in 2015/2016 and further to 230 million in 2019/2021. 


Progress Across All Indicators 

The report highlights that deprivation in all indicators declined in India, and the fastest absolute progress was observed among the poorest states and groups, including children and people belonging to disadvantaged caste groups. Here are some key indicators that witnessed significant improvements: 


  • Nutrition: The percentage of people who are multidimensionally poor and deprived under the nutrition indicator declined from 44.3 percent in 2005/2006 to 11.8 percent in 2019/2021. 

  • Child Mortality: Child mortality rate decreased from 4.5 percent to 1.5 percent, indicating improved healthcare and access to essential services. 

  • Cooking Fuel: The percentage of people who are poor and deprived of cooking fuel fell from 52.9 percent to 13.9 percent, enabling better access to clean cooking solutions.

India poverty reduction


  • Sanitation: The proportion of people deprived of sanitation facilities decreased from 50.4 percent in 2005/2006 to 11.3 percent in 2019/2021. 

  • Drinking Water: The percentage of people who are multidimensionally poor and deprived of safe drinking water reduced from 16.4 percent to 2.7 percent. 

  • Electricity: Access to electricity witnessed a significant improvement, with the percentage of people living in multidimensional poverty and deprived of electricity declining from 29 percent to 2.1 percent. 

  • Housing: The proportion of people living in inadequate housing conditions decreased from 44.9 percent to 13.6 percent. 

These achievements reflect serious efforts by India for poverty reduction and to improve the quality of life and well-being of its citizens across various dimensions. 


Success Beyond Incidence Levels 

The report also emphasizes that countries with different incidences of poverty have successfully halved their global MPI values. While 17 countries achieved this with an initial incidence under 25 percent, both India and Congo began with an incidence above 50 percent. This underscores the effectiveness of targeted interventions and inclusive policies in uplifting the lives of the most vulnerable populations. 

India was among the 19 countries that managed to halve their global Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI) value during the specific period of 2005/2006–2015/2016. This period signifies India's commitment to poverty reduction and its ability to make substantial progress within a decade.


India poverty reduction


India’s poverty reduction, comprising the upliftment of 415 million people in just 15 years is an inspiring example of what can be achieved through determined efforts, effective policies, and comprehensive measures. The reduction in poverty incidence across multiple dimensions indicates significant improvements in the living standards of the Indian population, particularly among the most marginalized communities. It is crucial for the nation to continue its pursuit of poverty eradication, ensuring sustainability and inclusivity in all future endeavours. 


Thanks for reading, share the good news :) and follow us on social media to read more such stories.

Read more in Economy

The United Indian