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Is It Shocking That India Ranks Below Iran And Palestine In 2020 Happiness Index?

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5 Indices That Show How Far India Has Progressed In Various Fields

Global Hunger Index 2020 (GHI)

This year’s GHI was published with the theme ‘One Decade To Zero Hunger’ ‘ Linking Health And Sustainable Food Systems ‘.
In the last 2 decades, (2000-2020) India hasn’t fared well and fallen in the “alarming” or “serious” category while scoring 27.2 points out of 100. Representational Image.
India ranks 94th out of 107 countries. India has been placed in the ‘serious ‘ hunger situation category by the ‘Welt Hunger Hilfe’ who publishes this report. In the last 2 decades, (2000-2020) India hasn’t fared well and fallen in the “alarming” or “serious” category while scoring 27.2 points out of 100.
In 2000, we got 38.9 points. More points indicate more seriousness of the hunger issue.  The report mentioned “‘South Asia’s child stunting rate as of 2019 was 33.2 percent, down from 51.3 percent in 2000. India—the region’s most populous country, experienced a decline in under-five mortality in this period, driven largely by decreases in deaths from birth asphyxia or trauma, neonatal infections, pneumonia, and diarrhoea.

Climate Change Performance Index released by German Watch

Published annually since 2005, the Climate Change Performance Index (CCPI) tracks countries’ efforts to combat climate change. As an independent monitoring tool, it aims to enhance transparency in international climate politics and enables comparison of climate protection efforts and progress made by individual countries.
Although India has one of the largest growth trends, per capita emissions stay at a comparatively low level, rated very high for their well-below 2°C compatibilities. India ranked 10th  while scoring 63.98 points out of 100.  Various parameters, including Greenhouse Gas ( GHG ) Emissions, renewable energy use, etc., are taken into consideration in this index.
India has significantly reduced its GHG emissions while increasing its reliance on renewable energy. India has taken a great initiative by hosting the International Solar Alliance. and it is way ahead of China(48th), USA (55th) and Canada (56th) in practising the Paris Climate agreement.

World Happiness Report by the United Nations

The rankings of country happiness are based this year on the pooled results from Gallup World Poll surveys from 2017-2019 and continue to show both change and stability.

The top countries tend to have high values for most of the key variables that have been found to support well-being, including income, healthy life expectancy, social support, freedom, trust, and generosity, to such a degree that year to year changes in the top rankings are to be expected.

India is a new entrant to the bottom-ten group with 144th rank out of 153 countries. Its large and steady decline in life evaluation scores since 2015 means that its annual score in 2019 is now 1.2 points lower than in 2015.

The ten countries with the largest declines in average life evaluations typically suffered some combination of economic, political, and social stresses. The five largest drops since 2008-2012 were in Venezuela, Afghanistan, Lesotho, Zambia, and India, with drops over one point in each case.

The biggest life evaluation drops were in Venezuela and Afghanistan, down by about 1.8 and 1.5 points respectively. India, with close to a fifth of the global population, saw a 1.2-point decline. New Delhi, where the  CM, Arvind Kejriwal, has started Happiness Curriculum in schools is in the bottom ten cities of the world in the happiness index. Our neighbours Pakistan, Bangladesh and Srilanka stood at 66th, 107th 130th rank respectively. The most shocking thing is that Iran, Iraq and Palestinian territories which are generally war-torn have ranked better than India.

Corruption Perception Index (CPI)  by Transparency International

Corruption is a pan India oil which you need to move the machinations fast. People are forced to give bribes in some or other form to get their work done. On 28th May 2014, Narendra Modi on his first day in PMO, set up an SIT committee under a retired SC judge to deal with corruption.

In his various election rallies, he promised people that he would bring back the black money to India. The rest is ‘sarcasm’. Now in 2020, no one speaks of black money as if all the big bulls in our country have come clean on the transactions. But Transparency International burst this perception of Indians by releasing the Corruption ‘perception ‘ Index in which our ” VISHWAGURU” and ”MOTHER OF DEMOCRACY’  India has ranked  80th out of 180 countries.

World Press Freedom Index (WPFI) by Reporters Without Borders

According to the last 10 reports (2010-2020) of WPFI,  649 journalists were killed all over the world in this decade. Representational Image.

Every year since 2002, Reporters Without Borders releases an index which ranks countries based on the freedom of expression of journalism. India has ranked 142nd out of 180 countries. But remember, our PM and HM are completely in support of freedom of the press, to such an extent, that they didn’t utter a single word when renowned senior journalists Gauri Lankesh and Shujaat Bukhari were shot down.

According to the last 10 reports (2010-2020) of WPFI,  649 journalists were killed all over the world in this decade. Close to 6% (38) of the total journalists killed were from India. Indian journalists critical of the government continue to face trolls and death threats on various social media platforms.

While writing this, a journalist has been shot dead as he exposed the scholarship scam, another journalist has been burnt down in India.

Note: This article is data-driven as its sources are various reports published in the year 2020.

This article was previously published here

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An ambassador and trained facilitator under Eco Femme (a social enterprise working towards menstrual health in south India), Sanjina is also an active member of the MHM Collective- India and Menstrual Health Alliance- India. She has conducted Menstrual Health sessions in multiple government schools adopted by Rotary District 3240 as part of their WinS project in rural Bengal. She has also delivered training of trainers on SRHR, gender, sexuality and Menstruation for Tomorrow’s Foundation, Vikramshila Education Resource Society, Nirdhan trust and Micro Finance, Tollygunj Women In Need, Paint It Red in Kolkata.

Now as an MH Fellow with YKA, she’s expanding her impressive scope of work further by launching a campaign to facilitate the process of ensuring better menstrual health and SRH services for women residing in correctional homes in West Bengal. The campaign will entail an independent study to take stalk of the present conditions of MHM in correctional homes across the state and use its findings to build public support and political will to take the necessary action.

Saurabh has been associated with YKA as a user and has consistently been writing on the issue MHM and its intersectionality with other issues in the society. Now as an MHM Fellow with YKA, he’s launched the Right to Period campaign, which aims to ensure proper execution of MHM guidelines in Delhi’s schools.

The long-term aim of the campaign is to develop an open culture where menstruation is not treated as a taboo. The campaign also seeks to hold the schools accountable for their responsibilities as an important component in the implementation of MHM policies by making adequate sanitation infrastructure and knowledge of MHM available in school premises.

Read more about his campaign.

Harshita is a psychologist and works to support people with mental health issues, particularly adolescents who are survivors of violence. Associated with the Azadi Foundation in UP, Harshita became an MHM Fellow with YKA, with the aim of promoting better menstrual health.

Her campaign #MeriMarzi aims to promote menstrual health and wellness, hygiene and facilities for female sex workers in UP. She says, “Knowledge about natural body processes is a very basic human right. And for individuals whose occupation is providing sexual services, it becomes even more important.”

Meri Marzi aims to ensure sensitised, non-discriminatory health workers for the needs of female sex workers in the Suraksha Clinics under the UPSACS (Uttar Pradesh State AIDS Control Society) program by creating more dialogues and garnering public support for the cause of sex workers’ menstrual rights. The campaign will also ensure interventions with sex workers to clear misconceptions around overall hygiene management to ensure that results flow both ways.

Read more about her campaign.

MH Fellow Sabna comes with significant experience working with a range of development issues. A co-founder of Project Sakhi Saheli, which aims to combat period poverty and break menstrual taboos, Sabna has, in the past, worked on the issue of menstruation in urban slums of Delhi with women and adolescent girls. She and her team also released MenstraBook, with menstrastories and organised Menstra Tlk in the Delhi School of Social Work to create more conversations on menstruation.

With YKA MHM Fellow Vineet, Sabna launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society. As a start, the campaign aims to begin conversations on menstrual health with five hundred adolescents and youth in Delhi through offline platforms, and through this community mobilise support to create Period Friendly Institutions out of educational institutes in the city.

Read more about her campaign. 

A student from Delhi School of Social work, Vineet is a part of Project Sakhi Saheli, an initiative by the students of Delhi school of Social Work to create awareness on Menstrual Health and combat Period Poverty. Along with MHM Action Fellow Sabna, Vineet launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society.

As a start, the campaign aims to begin conversations on menstrual health with five hundred adolescents and youth in Delhi through offline platforms, and through this community mobilise support to create Period Friendly Institutions out of educational institutes in the city.

Find out more about the campaign here.

A native of Bhagalpur district – Bihar, Shalini Jha believes in equal rights for all genders and wants to work for a gender-equal and just society. In the past she’s had a year-long association as a community leader with Haiyya: Organise for Action’s Health Over Stigma campaign. She’s pursuing a Master’s in Literature with Ambedkar University, Delhi and as an MHM Fellow with YKA, recently launched ‘Project अल्हड़ (Alharh)’.

She says, “Bihar is ranked the lowest in India’s SDG Index 2019 for India. Hygienic and comfortable menstruation is a basic human right and sustainable development cannot be ensured if menstruators are deprived of their basic rights.” Project अल्हड़ (Alharh) aims to create a robust sensitised community in Bhagalpur to collectively spread awareness, break the taboo, debunk myths and initiate fearless conversations around menstruation. The campaign aims to reach at least 6000 adolescent girls from government and private schools in Baghalpur district in 2020.

Read more about the campaign here.

A psychologist and co-founder of a mental health NGO called Customize Cognition, Ritika forayed into the space of menstrual health and hygiene, sexual and reproductive healthcare and rights and gender equality as an MHM Fellow with YKA. She says, “The experience of working on MHM/SRHR and gender equality has been an enriching and eye-opening experience. I have learned what’s beneath the surface of the issue, be it awareness, lack of resources or disregard for trans men, who also menstruate.”

The Transmen-ses campaign aims to tackle the issue of silence and disregard for trans men’s menstruation needs, by mobilising gender sensitive health professionals and gender neutral restrooms in Lucknow.

Read more about the campaign here.

A Computer Science engineer by education, Nitisha started her career in the corporate sector, before realising she wanted to work in the development and social justice space. Since then, she has worked with Teach For India and Care India and is from the founding batch of Indian School of Development Management (ISDM), a one of its kind organisation creating leaders for the development sector through its experiential learning post graduate program.

As a Youth Ki Awaaz Menstrual Health Fellow, Nitisha has started Let’s Talk Period, a campaign to mobilise young people to switch to sustainable period products. She says, “80 lakh women in Delhi use non-biodegradable sanitary products, generate 3000 tonnes of menstrual waste, that takes 500-800 years to decompose; which in turn contributes to the health issues of all menstruators, increased burden of waste management on the city and harmful living environment for all citizens.

Let’s Talk Period aims to change this by

Find out more about her campaign here.

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A former Assistant Secretary with the Ministry of Women and Child Development in West Bengal for three months, Lakshmi Bhavya has been championing the cause of menstrual hygiene in her district. By associating herself with the Lalana Campaign, a holistic menstrual hygiene awareness campaign which is conducted by the Anahat NGO, Lakshmi has been slowly breaking taboos when it comes to periods and menstrual hygiene.

A Gender Rights Activist working with the tribal and marginalized communities in india, Srilekha is a PhD scholar working on understanding body and sexuality among tribal girls, to fill the gaps in research around indigenous women and their stories. Srilekha has worked extensively at the grassroots level with community based organisations, through several advocacy initiatives around Gender, Mental Health, Menstrual Hygiene and Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights (SRHR) for the indigenous in Jharkhand, over the last 6 years.

Srilekha has also contributed to sustainable livelihood projects and legal aid programs for survivors of sex trafficking. She has been conducting research based programs on maternal health, mental health, gender based violence, sex and sexuality. Her interest lies in conducting workshops for young people on life skills, feminism, gender and sexuality, trauma, resilience and interpersonal relationships.

A Guwahati-based college student pursuing her Masters in Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Bidisha started the #BleedwithDignity campaign on the technology platform, demanding that the Government of Assam install
biodegradable sanitary pad vending machines in all government schools across the state. Her petition on has already gathered support from over 90000 people and continues to grow.

Bidisha was selected in’s flagship program ‘She Creates Change’ having run successful online advocacy
campaigns, which were widely recognised. Through the #BleedwithDignity campaign; she organised and celebrated World Menstrual Hygiene Day, 2019 in Guwahati, Assam by hosting a wall mural by collaborating with local organisations. The initiative was widely covered by national and local media, and the mural was later inaugurated by the event’s chief guest Commissioner of Guwahati Municipal Corporation (GMC) Debeswar Malakar, IAS.

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