Millennium Development Goals & India

These are 8 international development goals agreed to be achieved by 192 UN Members and 23 International organisations by 2015. They were launched in the Millennium Summit in New York in September 2000. Since then The MDGs have become the most widely-accepted yardstick of development efforts by governments, donors and NGOs. The 8 Goals are as follows:
  1. Eradicate Extreme Poverty and Hunger
    Today, an estimated 1.2 billion people live on less than $1 a day. The first Goal calls for halving this number, as well as the number of people who suffer from hunger, by 2015.
  2. Achieve Universal Primary Education
    There are currently 115 million children—60 percent of them girls—not in primary school, the majority living in South Asia and sub-Saharan Africa.
  3. Promote Gender Equality and Empower Women
    In both rich and poor countries, gender discrimination persists, and its consequences are difficult to ignore. Nowhere is this more apparent than in some developing countries, where traditional beliefs and practices put a high premium on boys’ education, while girls are excluded. Even when girls start school, they are more likely to drop out for these reasons. Without at least a complete primary education, women face limited employment options, discrimination, lower pay, and less control over their health and well-being.
  4. Reduce Child Mortality
    According to the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), on average in developing countries, for every 1,000 children, 100 die before the age of five. Around the world, thousands of children die every year from preventable causes: illnesses caused by contaminated water, inadequate immunization, injuries from war and civil conflict, high levels of poverty and malnutrition, HIV/AIDS and the high incidence of malaria and tuberculosis.
  5. Improve Maternal Health
    In 2000, more than half a million women died in childbirth or from pregnancy-related complications. Ninety-nine percent of these deaths, many of them preventable, occur in developing countries. Infections, severe blood loss and unsafe abortions account for the majority of deaths. Goal 5 calls for reducing the rate of maternal mortality by 75 % by 2015.
  6. Combat HIV/AIDS, Malaria and Other Diseases
    The rampant spread of infectious diseases threatens to reverse development progress, reduce life expectancy and cut productivity. With an estimated 40 million people living with HIV/AIDS and 20 million deaths since the disease was first identified, AIDS poses an unprecedented health, economic, and social challenge on a global scale.
  7. Ensure Environmental Sustainability
    Because the environment provides the raw materials vital to sustaining human development, we must ensure that, in turn, international development policies work to preserve our natural environment.
  8. Develop a Global Partnership for Development
    The last goal is in some ways the most significant: without key partnerships between rich and poor countries, the previous seven goals may not be achievable. Great opportunities for growth and development exist in today’s fast-changing global economy, but many poor countries have been left behind, lacking access to new technologies as well as the resources to participate in the globalization process.

India & Millenium Development Goals:
The Eleventh Five-Year Plan (2008-2012) proposes state-specific targets. The Government has launched several large programmes with regard to the MDGs. The areas that require maximum efforts include literacy, nutrition, maternal mortality and child mortality. The responsibility of implementing most of the social sector programmes relating to the Goals lies with the state governments. India has launched following programmes in an effort to achieve MDGs:

  1. Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (Education for All Campaign), launched in the year 2000, is a national programme to make elementary education accessible to all.
  2. National Rural Health Mission is focused on basic health-care delivery systems through a synergistic approach focusing on sanitation, water, nutrition, and health care.

related post: Poverty in India : Some Latest Projections of IMF

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