India ranked 103rd among 119 countries in the 2018 Global Hunger Index. Concern Worldwide and Welthungerhilfe have jointly published the report that identifies India as one of the countries with “serious level of hunger”. It zeros in on India, Djibouti and South Sudan as the countries where child wasting is most prevalent. Children under the age of five, who become victims of acute under nutrition with low weight for their height, are tagged in the group of child wasting.
Among our neighbouring countries, India (103) is behind China (25), Sri Lanka (67), Myanmar (68), Nepal (72) and Bangladesh (86) and only ahead of Pakistan (106) and Afghanistan (111) on the Hunger Index. Hunger means the distress associated with a lack of sufficient calories that makes children disabled and stunted forever.
In the ‘State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World, 2017’ report, Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the UN has estimated that 190.7 million (14.5 per cent of our population) people are undernourished in India. Ironically, it has also been estimated by the UN that nearly 40 per cent of the food produced in India is wasted or lost. And this cost India one lakh crore rupees every year. Obsolete technology used in infrastructure and transporting food items is the culprit for food wastage in India.
Instead of engaging in temple tug of war, city renaming and statue building games or trying to find lives in Mars, we must adopt a better technology to reduce food wastage to save millions of living temples of our country. The government can start shelters in various places to distribute cooked food to hungry people after collecting excess and donated fresh cooked food from local eateries and houses that have sent missed call/ SMS/ WhatsApp requests to a particular number. In this way, wastage of cooked food can also be checked and managed in a proper way.