Thursday, May 7

Issues in Madhya Pradesh after Polls

Issues in Madhya Pradesh a report by Vikas Samvad

There are issues, questions, problems and crisis in Madhya Pradesh and voters are facing then in their regular life. Now the state is in election fever. In this context it is interesting to have a view of some issues, out of many.
Corruption in Madhya Pradesh (Brief of the Transparency International Report)
Madhya Pradesh is one of the 5 (Bihar, Assam, Jammu & Kashmir, Utter Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh) most corrupt states in India. The report of transparency International (Released in June 2008) shows that the level of corruption in Madhya Pradesh is Alarming. The study, like the earlier ones, is based on CMS PEE model where the scope is not limited to perceptions about corruption in general, but perception in specific context of a service and, more importantly, actual experience of paying bribe by BPL households in availing one or more of the 11 selected public services. Depending on the frequency of interaction, the eleven services are divided broadly into “basic services” (PDS, Hospital, School Education (up to class XII), Electricity and Water Supply Services) and “need based services” (Land Records / Registration, Housing, Forest, NREGS, Banking and Police Service (traffic and crime)). In Himachal Pradesh the level of corruption is “moderate” in all the 11 services studied whereas in the case Madhya Pradesh and Assam, corruption level in all the 11 services was high or very high or alarming. The research was carried out in 5 districts (Shivpuri, Jhabua, Bhopal, Balaghat and Sidhi) of Madhya
Pradesh. As regards the relative position of States on corruption in availing the 11 public services by BPL households, Assam, J & K, Bihar, Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh have an “alarming level” of corruption.
▓ Hunger in Madhya Pradesh (Brief of the IFPRI Report)
A recently released report by International Food Policy Research Institute notes that not a single state in India falls in the ‘low hunger’ or ‘moderate hunger’ categories defined by the GHI 2008. Instead, most states fall in the ‘alarming’ category, with one state Madhya Pradesh – falling in the ‘extremely alarming’ category. IFPRI Report shows the position of the 17 Indian states relative to the countries for which the Global Hunger Index 2008 is reported. India’s rank on the GHI 2008 is 66; the ranks of the different states in relation to the GHI range from 34 for the state of Punjab (whose ISHI score lies places it between Nicaragua and Ghana) to 82 for Madhya Pradesh (whose ISHI score places it between Chad and Ethiopia). Ten of the 17 states have an ISHI rank that is above India’s (66), which indicates that these states are relative out performers. This report also presents the association between the hunger index and the rate of economic growth for each state. The figure shows little evidence of a consistent relationship between the two variables. A state that experienced negative real growth (in net state domestic product per capita) between 1999-2000 and 2004-05 (e.g., Madhya Pradesh) has a high hunger index, but so did states like Bihar, Jharkhand and Chhattisgarh that experienced much higher rates of economic growth over this time period. Again, Punjab stands out as a remarkable “positive outlier”, with its much lower hunger index than states such as Kerala, Andhra Pradesh and Haryana whose rate of economic growth was two to threetimes larger 1 This information Backgrounder has been prepared by Vikas Samvad, Madhya Pradesh during the same period (<2% color="#ff0000">▓ Water Crisis in Madhya Pradesh
Drought is becoming a regular phenomenon in Madhya Pradesh. In last 15 years 14 to 39 districts have been facing the distress situations of drought every year. As pert the reports of Madhya Pradesh Public Health Engineering Department there were 9000 habitations were provided with less then 40 liter per person per day. This is the amount of water considered to be the minimum requirement for an individual to fill the daily needs. Alarmingly the number of habitations in crisis has now gone up to 15000 in the Year 2007-08, Department’s report says. In continuation to the same context, the number of habitations having “no water source” has also increased by more then 5 time then the 2001 situation. There were 448 habitations were identified in “no water source category”, but in the year 2007-08, it has gone up to 2000 habitations. Water has been an issue being talked about on various forums but no governments bothered to have debates on the causes of water crisis like losing community control over water resources, de-forestation, privatization and marketisation of water and extreme industrial use. The studies of Central Ground Water Board have put 6 blocks on most crisis zone, where more then 100% ground water. There are 65 development blocks, which have consumed 65 to 100% of water. The Central Ground Water Board report also says that the water level of more then 40.73% open wells has decreased by 2 meter and in many of the locations it has gone down by 4 meter. It is a caution for the future government. This biggest curse is that our representatives and political leaders do not have a perspective of handling the crisis of water in a sustainable manner.
Health Crisis in Madhya Pradesh
It just not a coincidence that Madhya Pradesh tops the list with highest Infant Mortality Rate (IMR) of 72, Lowest life expectancy of 57.7 Years in comparison to Indian average of 63.2 years. 80 percent of the expenditure comes out of private pocket and this is the biggest cause of indebtedness among tribal, dalit and other marginalized communities. We just have one hospital bed for the population of 5.6 villages in public health institutions. In the collapsed health system even doctors do not want to work, interestingly in last 4 years average post of 39 CMHOs have been filled by in charge doctors, so that they could be exploited by the authorities. Only 137 posts of gynecologists and obstetricians are approved in the entire state, many of which were vacant for years. After a long battle, the government began the process of filling the vacancies last year: 78 posts of gynecologists and obstetricians, and 112 posts for anesthetists. But only 31 applications were received for the former and only 12 anesthetists’ posts could be filled. Expenditure in health services has increased enormously in comparison to any other services because it is essential but not fully provided by the Government. Alarmingly provision for Health sector has been stagnant to 2.40% of the total Madhya Pradesh budget expenditure; it simply means that strengthening public health sector is not a priority for the Government. Presently Madhya Pradesh allocates approximately 900 Crore rupees for the State Health services, for the population of 6.50 Crore. It means only an amount of Rs. 138 has been allocated per person per year. Interestingly, even out of this amount Rs. 114 just goes in Salary and overheads account and one person gets Rs. 2 for medicine, checkups, investigations and other care. There has been a need to create more and more infrastructure and new institutions in the State, but again not a singe Primary Health Institution has been created in last five years in the State. The state of
Madhya Pradesh needs 478 PHCs and 1528 Sub Health Centers for last 8 Years, but no improvement could be seen. Normally data does not give a very real picture, but here it will!! According to population we require 916 Medical Specialists, but only 49 in place, out of 4708 posts of Medical Officers 1659 are laying vacant, there are only 216 pharmacists in Health department against the need of 1421, and 1098 posts of ANM are still to be filled. The reality on political side is very depressing, because political parties or even peoples representatives never came out on road for people’s right to Health Care. It very difficult to say that now doctors will come and join the state health services at any COST, because now they are bound to spend Rs 25-35 Lakh to become a doctor, and a salary of Rs. 40 thousand will not support them to pay the interest against the education loan. In other words, if Government have human character and wants to provide genuine health services to poor, they will have to subsidies and control the medical education.
Education in Madhya Pradesh
A report on the performance and indicators of the elementary education in the nation, released by the District Information System for Education [DISE], NUEPA, depicts the jeopardous state of elementary education in Madhya Pradesh. The series report flashes various data and indicators of elementary education for the academic year 2006-07 in 35 Indian states and Union Territories [UTs]. It also shows that to promote the private education institutions / or the market of education, State government has been avoiding the development of public education sector. It seems policy makers want government education institutions to be collapsed, specifically in terms of quality, facilities, credibility and access. The way private sector has been invited and given opportunities through investors meet, it also shows that fact the Public resources have been handed over to the corporate sector in the name of education
development. Interestingly the education of tribal and other marginalized children has been handed over to less skilled, less educated and non-trained Para- teachers. To get the political gain State Government in the year 2007 took a policy decision that now Para-Teachers will also be included in mainstream teachers list. In a sense they may get salary or other related benefits, but it does not ensure that quality of education will be upgraded. Though the Madhya Pradesh government has taken strides in enrolling children in schools but there have been blithe efforts in providing quality education to them thus leading to their retention in schools. As per the report there is a robust hike in the GER [Gross Enrollment Ratio] of children at primary level, i.e., from 129.76% in the year 2005-06 to 143.58% in 2006-07 but there has been a keel on the
educational development front of the children as on various development indicators the state has
delivered mediocre performance. The state's commitment in providing quality education to all its children is clear from its slumping position at 30th rank, i.e., sixth from the lowest in terms of performance on four basic variables used in computing Educational Development Index [EDI], namely, Access, Infrastructure, Teachers and Outcomes.
Madhya Pradesh's rank and performance on various components of EDI at Primary Level Primary Level Upper Primary level 2005-06 2006-07 2005-06 2006-07
Index Rank Index Rank Index Rank Index Rank
Access 0.634 5th 0.593 8th 0.548 10th 0.590 20th
Infrastructure 0.513 29th 0.540 26th 0.531 2 9th 0.581 27th
Teachers 0.320 33rd 0.355 33rd 0.498 33rd 0.380 33rd
Outcomes 0.570 12th 0.492 25th 0.458 16th 0.384 24th
Overall EDI 0.514 24th 0.478 31st 0.509 29th 0.483 31st
Combined Primary and 0.512 – 29th rank [2005-06] 0.481 - 3 0th rank [2006-07] Upper Primary level
The above table shows that Madhya Pradesh has terribly sunk in providing access, infrastructure and outcomes in its educational service and programme. The indicator for Outcome includes Gross Enrolment Ratio – Overall, Scheduled Castes: Gross Enrolment Ratio, Scheduled Tribes: Gross Enrolment Ratio, Gender Parity Index in Enrolment, Repetition Rate, Drop-out Rate, Ratio of Exit Class over Class I Enrolment (only at Primary stage), Percentage of Passed, Children to Total Enrolment, Percentage of Appeared Children passing with 60 per cent and more marks. An enormous downfall in terms Outcomes have shown that there is a thrust on enrolling children in school without paying any heed in delivering quality education to them for improving their performance and results in schools. As per the DISE report 06-07 75.39% boys and 73.24% girls passed in grade IV/V, whereas 21.31% boys and 20.48% girls have passed with 60% and above marks. Similarly, 62.67% boys and 62.40% girls passed in grade VII/VIII and 19.10% boys and 20.10% girls have passed with 60% and above marks. At the combined primary and upper primary level Madhya Pradesh has fallen down from 29th to the 30th position in 2006-07. The peculiarity of providing access to children is not just limited to providing schools in every habitation but is also about making the school environment conducive and enabling for children and providing adequate upper primary schools in the proportion of primary schools. Notwithstanding this the ratio of Ratio of primary schools to upper primary schools Madhya Pradesh has fallen down from 2.8 in 2005-06 to 2.7 in 2006-07.
As per the Annual report of the Department of School Education report, 2006-07, the state government has met 83% of its physical target of upgrading 386 primary schools into Middle schools and have spend 51.1% of the budgeted amount [Rs. 14447850]. There are funds but perhaps there is no commitment to utilize them for the apt cause. Also, the issue of access is somewhere related to the defying dignity and exclusion of children in schools on the basis of caste, religion, creed, sex, etc. When Scheduled caste children are oft repeatedly discriminated and excluded in the school on the basis of caste then how can a state ensure appropriate access and retention of children in schools? An insight in the details regarding infrastructure, particularly available classroom for children in schools, presents the giddying attitude carried by the state government on the plight of children attending government schools in the state. As per the DISE report 2006-07 the percentage of schools with Student Classroom ratio more than 1:60 has raised from 15.55% in 2005-06 to 17.87% in 2006-07. On the other hand the Annual report of School Education Department, 2006-07 says that MP government has achieved merely 31.49% of its target of constructing additional rooms and 37.8% of its target of
constructing buildings in primary schools [constructed 1650 buildings out of targeted 4357]. While the state government has got the budget for constructing rooms for children due to its sheer ignorance children are huddled like animals in a classroom. Only 76.88% schools have pucca buildings, paying little attention on the inclusion of disabled children only 22.04% schools have ramp, 24.59 % government and aided schools have kitchen shed, 11.8% schools doesn’t have drinking water facility in school, only 26.43% schools have girl's toilet in school and 22.12% schools are single teacher schools.
Though the overall GER has taken a huge stride but there has been no significant growth in the
inclusion of girl children in schools. The government schemes and intention for enhancing girl's
enrollment has taken a setback as the percentage of girl's enrollment has fallen down from 48.85 % in 2005-06 to 48.75 % in 06-07 in class I-V. Moreover, the percentage of female teachers in primary schools has also slumped down to 66.62% in 06-07% 66.69% in 05-06. Though there has been efforts for recruiting more female teachers by bringing a reservation policy for them but a little has been offered in the name of facilities and security of these female teachers recruited in rural remote areas. As an offshoot of this the female teachers tend to get themselves transferred to an accessible place and in the process the schools are again left without teachers.
Madhya Pradesh at a glance
(Source: DISE 06-07])
􀂾 76.88% schools have pucca buildings.
􀂾 Average Student – Classroom ratio is 44.
􀂾 22.12% schools are single teacher schools.
􀂾 19.08% children [Primary schools]; 13.67% children in all schools are attending a single teacher school.
􀂾 % schools having PTR > 60 has increased from 22.72% in 2005-06 to 24.14% in 2006-07 [PS] and 21.03% in 05-06 to 22.16% in 06-07 [all schools].
􀂾 % schools having PTR > 100 has also increased from 5.55% in 05-06 to 6.75% in 06-07 [PS] and 5.30% in 2005-06 to 6.56% in 06-07.
􀂾 % schools with female teachers have come down from 66.69% in 05-06 to 66.62% in 06-07.
􀂾 % schools having drinking water facility in school – 88.2%.
􀂾 % schools having girl's toilet in school – 26.43%
􀂾 5.62% teachers [20735] involved in Non Teaching Work; 22 days spend in non teaching work.
Identification of Poverty
The issue of poverty has been more challenged by its own definition and strategy of avoidance adopted by the State and Central government. It worth mentioning that as per the latest definition by economic indicators, those families living in rural areas spending Re. 11 per person per day and in urban areas Re. 19 per person per day are considered to be poor. There is no need to define how a person can survive on this expenditure criterion. On these points Government of India reaches to a conclusion that poverty in India is decreasing. Actually Poverty is not decreasing but policy makers and some policy makers shortening the poverty line, which now should be called Starvation Line. On the basis of these criterias poverty in Madhya Pradesh has increased to 38.2 percent in 2004-05 from 37.43 percent in 2002.
Interestingly Central Government decides the level of poverty and leaves no space for State government in discussion, and this non-coordination creates havoc between Central-State relations. As per the Government of India 41.25 Lac families are in BPL list but Madhya Pradesh Government has already distributed BPL cards to 64 lac families. Madhya Pradesh Government is saying that poverty in Madhya Pradesh is increasing and state needs more support for poverty eradication programs, but GoI is not at all ready to accept any argument on poverty. Due to this huge difference all the families get only maximum 20 KGs food grain under the PDS scheme, because state government is dividing the food allocated by the Central Government for 41.25 lac families in 64 lac families identified by household survey in the state.
Still many most marginalized individuals, families and communities at large are living with acute poverty,but have not been identified for below the poverty line list. This invisibalisation makes their life more complex and though, because they go out of the essential criteria list for getting any benefit under poverty eradication program and social security scheme. One example is very commonly seen in the villages, now Government of India has extended the benefit of Old Age Pension scheme from destitute old aged persons to all the old aged persons living below the poverty line, but the problem is that still many eligible old aged persons have been kept out of the BPL list.
Madhya Pradesh no. 1 in crime against children
The National Crime Records Bureau, Ministry of Home Affairs report released in late 2007 says that Madhya Pradesh has acquired the 'top slot' in the nation in terms of number of incidence and rate of crimes committed against children during 2006. The report has undertaken a
comparative analysis of crime in thirty-five States and UTs [Union Territories] in India.
During 2006, total 3939 incidence of crime against children were reported in Madhya Pradesh,
highest in India. It was followed by Maharashtra [2841], Delhi [2160] and Uttar Pradesh [1767]. The State contributed almost one-fifth [20.8%] to the all-India percentage of incidence of crime against children.
Indore, the commercial hub of Madhya Pradesh, acquires 2nd position in the city-wise data
succeeding the 'national crime capital', Delhi. Portraying itself as a fore-runner in showing callousness towards children, Bhopal [the State capital], is ranked at 6th position. Total 418 and 72 incidences of crime committed against children were reported during 2006 in Indore and Bhopal, respectively.
During 2006, 829 incidence of rape and 43 incidence of infanticide; the highest number in India,
were registered in Madhya Pradesh. Also, the State has bagged third top-most position in the
incidence of murder of children. Following Uttar Pradesh [392 cases] and Maharashtra [203] total 117 murder cases of children were registered in Madhya Pradesh. Moreover, in the State four incidences under Child Marriage Restraint Act, 1978 were reported.

The data for disposal of cases by courts for crimes committed against children during 2006 depicts the grey side of judicial trial system. As per the records out of the total 9948 for trail [including the pending cases from previous year], 7019 were pending at the end of the year, 1344 were acquitted or discharged, 1075 were convicted and 510 were withdrawn. This implies that at the year-end the pending percentage of cases is 70.6%.

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