The Global Social Network
India occupies 126th position among 137 nations ranked in the World Happiness Report 2023 released by the Sustainable Development Solutions Network. In South Asia, Pakistan (score 4.555) ranks 108, Sri Lanka 112, Bangladesh (4.282) 118 and India 126 (4.036). Only Taliban-ruled Afghanistan ranks worse at 137. Finland is the happiest nation in the world, followed by Denmark and Iceland in 2nd and 3rd place.
|Least Happy Countries in 2023. Source: Quartz|
|Bottom Third Countries in World Happiness Rankings. Source: World H...|
The latest country rankings show life evaluations (answers to the Cantril ladder question) for each country, averaged over a 3 year period from 2020-2022. The Cantril ladder asks respondents to think of a ladder, with the best possible life for them being a 10 and the worst possible life being a 0. They are then asked to rate their own current lives on that 0 to 10 scale. The rankings are from nationally representative samples for the years 2020-2022.
|World Happiness Map 2023. Source: Visual Capitalist|
Happiness Scores Trend:
After climbing to a high of 5.65 in 2019, Pakistan's happiness scores have declined in recent years, reaching a low of 4.52 during the Covid pandemic. The most recent value is 4.555 for 2023.
|Recent Happiness Scores in Pakistan. Source: The Global Economy|
India's happiness scores have been declining every year since 2013, reaching a low of 3.78 during the Covid pandemic. The most recent value is 4.036 for 2023.
|Recent Happiness Scores in India. Source: The Global Economy|
Causes of Unhappiness:
Lack of social connections during covid lockdown, along with severe unemployment, high inflation and healthcare worries, took a toll on mental health of Indians, according to the experts quoted by the Indian media.
|Suicide Rates in India and Pakistan. Source: World Bank|
Indian experts' observations are supported by the Indian government data showing a marked increase in suicide rate in India. India saw the highest suicide rate (of 12 suicides per 100,000 population) since the beginning of this century, according to The Hindu. Experts say a lot of suicides would have gone unreported and that the numbers and suicide rates could have gone up in 2022 as well.
|Suicide Rate in India. Source: The Hindu|
India's unemployment rate rose to 7.45% in February 2023 from 7.14% in the previous month, according to data from the Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy (CMIE). CMIE’s weekly labor market analysis showed a marginal improvement in India’s labor participation rate to 39.92% in February compared to 39.8% in January 2023 resulting in an increase in the labour force from 440.8 million to 442.9 million.
"India’s LPR is much lower than global levels. According to the World Bank, the modeled ILO estimate for the world in 2020 was 58.6 per cent. The same model places India’s LPR at 46 percent. India is a large country and its low LPR drags down the world LPR as well. Implicitly, most other countries have a much higher LPR than the world average. According to the World Bank’s modeled ILO estimates, there are only 17 countries worse than India on LPR. Most of these are middle-eastern countries. These are countries such as Jordan, Yemen, Algeria, Iraq, Iran, Egypt, Syria, Senegal and Lebanon. Some of these countries are oil-rich and others are unfortunately mired in civil strife. India neither has the privileges of oil-rich countries nor the civil disturbances that could keep the LPR low. Yet, it suffers an LPR that is as low as seen in these countries".
|Labor Participation Rates in India and Pakistan. Source: World Bank...|
|Labor Participation Rates for Selected Nations. Source: World Bank/ILO|
Youth unemployment for ages15-24 in India is 24.9%, the highest in South Asia region. It is 14.8% in Bangladesh 14.8% and 9.2% in Pakistan, according to the International Labor Organization and the World Bank.
|Youth Unemployment in Bangladesh, India and Pakistan. Source: ILO, WB|
In spite of the headline GDP growth figures highlighted by the Indian and world media, the fact is that it has been jobless growth. The labor participation rate (LPR) in India has been falling for more than a decade. The LPR in India has been below Pakistan's for several years, according to the International Labor Organization (ILO).
|Indian GDP Sectoral Contribution Trend. Source: Ashoka Mody
|Indian Employment Trends By Sector. Source: CMIE Via Business Standard|
|World Hunger Rankings 2020. Source: World Hunger Index Report|
Hunger and malnutrition are worsening in parts of sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia because of the coronavirus pandemic, especially in low-income communities or those already stricken by continued conflict.
India has performed particularly poorly because of one of the world's strictest lockdowns imposed by Prime Minister Modi to contain the spread of the virus.
South Asia Investor Review
Pakistan Among World's Largest Food Producers
Food in Pakistan 2nd Cheapest in the World
Indian Economy Grew Just 0.2% Annually in Last Two Years
Pakistan to Become World's 6th Largest Cement Producer by 2030
Pakistan's 2012 GDP Estimated at $401 Billion
Pakistan's Computer Services Exports Jump 26% Amid COVID19 Lockdown
Coronavirus, Lives and Livelihoods in Pakistan
Vast Majority of Pakistanis Support Imran Khan's Handling of Covid1...
Pakistani-American Woman Featured in Netflix Documentary "Pandemic"
Incomes of Poorest Pakistanis Growing Faster Than Their Richest Cou...
Can Pakistan Effectively Respond to Coronavirus Outbreak?
How Grim is Pakistan's Social Sector Progress?
Pakistan Fares Marginally Better Than India On Disease Burdens
Trump Picks Muslim-American to Lead Vaccine Effort
COVID Lockdown Decimates India's Middle Class
Pakistan Child Health Indicators
Pakistan's Balance of Payments Crisis
How Has India Built Large Forex Reserves Despite Perennial Trade De...
Conspiracy Theories About Pakistan Elections"
PTI Triumphs Over Corrupt Dynastic Political Parties
Strikingly Similar Narratives of Donald Trump and Nawaz Sharif
Nawaz Sharif's Report Card
Riaz Haq's Youtube Channel
Adani’s business empire may or may not turn out to be the largest con in corporate history. But far greater dangers to civic morality, let alone democracy and global peace, are posed by those peddling the gigantic hoax of Modi’s India. Pankaj Mishra
Modi has counted on sympathetic journalists and financial speculators in the West to cast a seductive veil over his version of political economy, environmental activism and history. ‘I’d bet on Modi to transform India, all of it, including the newly integrated Kashmir region,’ Roger Cohen of the New York Times wrote in 2019 after Modi annulled the special constitutional status of India’s only Muslim-majority state and imposed a months-long curfew. The CEO of McKinsey recently said that we may be living in ‘India’s century’. Praising Modi for ‘implementing policies that have modernised India and supported its growth’, the economist and investor Nouriel Roubini described the country as a ‘vibrant democracy’. But it is becoming harder to evade the bleak reality that, despoiled by a venal, inept and tyrannical regime, ‘India is broken’ – the title of a disturbing new book by the economic historian Ashoka Mody.
The number of Indians who sleep hungry rose from 190 million in 2018 to 350 million in 2022, and malnutrition and malnourishment killed nearly two-thirds of the children who died under the age of five last year. At the same time, Modi’s cronies have flourished. The Economist estimates that the share of billionaire wealth in India derived from cronyism has risen from 29 per cent to 43 per cent in six years. According to a recent Oxfam report, India’s richest 1 per cent owned more than 40.5 per cent of its total wealth in 2021 – a statistic that the notorious oligarchies of Russia and Latin America never came close to matching. The new Indian plutocracy owes its swift ascent to Modi, and he has audaciously clarified the quid pro quo. Under the ‘electoral bond’ scheme he introduced in 2017, any business or special interest group can give unlimited sums of money to his party while keeping the transaction hidden from public scrutiny.
Modi also ensures his hegemony by forging a public sphere in which sycophancy is rewarded and dissent harshly punished. Adani last year took over NDTV, a television news channel that had displayed a rare immunity to hate speech, fake news and conspiracy theories. Human Rights Watch has detailed a broad onslaught on democratic rights: ‘the Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led government used abusive and discriminatory policies to repress Muslims and other minorities’ and ‘arrested activists, journalists and other critics of the government on politically motivated criminal charges, including of terrorism’. Last month, as the BJP’s official spokesperson denounced the BBC as ‘the most corrupt organisation in the world’, tax officials launched a sixty-hour raid on the broadcaster’s Indian offices in apparent retaliation for a two-part documentary on Modi’s role in anti-Muslim violence.
Also last month, the opposition leader Rahul Gandhi was expelled from parliament to put a stop to his persistent questions about Modi’s relationship with Adani. Such actions are at last provoking closer international scrutiny of what Modi calls the ‘mother of democracy’, though they haven’t come as a shock to those who have long known about Modi’s lifelong allegiance to Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh, an organisation that was explicitly inspired by European fascist movements and culpable in the assassination of Mohandas Gandhi in 1948.
Why Prof. Ashoka Mody Believes India is Broken | Princeton International
I have long felt that that upbeat story is completely divorced from the lived reality of the vast majority of Indians. I wanted to write a book about that lived reality, about jobs, education, healthcare, the cities Indians live in, the justice system they encounter, the air they breathe, the water they drink. And when you look at India through that lens of that reality, the progress is halting at best and far removed from the aspirations of people and what might have been. India is broken in the sense that for hundreds of millions of Indians, jobs are hard to get, and education and health care are poor. The justice system is coercive and brutal. The air quality remains extraordinarily poor. The rivers are dying. And it's not clear that things are going to get better. Underlying that brokenness, social norms and public accountability have eroded to a point where India seems to be in a catch-22: Unaccountable politicians do not impose accountability on themselves; therefore, no one has an incentive to impose accountability for policy priorities that might benefit large numbers of people. The elite are happy in their gated first-world communities. They shrug their shoulders and say, “What exactly is the problem?”
Prof Ashoka Mody interviewed by Barkha Dutt
Standard of Living by Country | Quality of Life by Country 2023
Numbeo Quality of Life