New Delhi, Oct 1: India ranks a poor 73 out of 91 countries when it comes to providing quality life for the aged, said a report released here Tuesday on the International Day of Older Persons.
The ‘Global Age Watch Index’ by HelpAge International calculated the geometric mean of four domains – income security, health status, employment and education and enabling environment.
India fairs poorly in all four domains: health status ranking is 85, employment and education ranking is 73. Similarly, enabling environment ranking is 72 though it fairs a bit better when it comes to income security with a ranking of 54, said the report.
“Health is a major concern area in India, with low levels of public spending. Between 196-97 and 205-06, the total government spending on health was stagnant at about one percent of the gross domestic product,” said Mathew Cherian, chief executive officer of HelpAge India.
“Despite efforts to increase public spending after 2005-06 including the adoption of national rural health mission, the expenditure has increased only marginally to 1.2 percent of gross domestic product in 2009-10,” added Cherian.
Though ranked amongst the lowest, India has done better than its neighbours – Nepal ranked 77, Pakistan, 89 and Afghanistan, 91 with the only exception of Sri Lanka which has performed exceptionally well and has been ranked 36.
“The aim of the report is to state the hard facts facing the world today. Many developing countries are facing a tough time to meet the required standards globally with a burgeoning ageing population,” said the report.