As per the National Family Health Survey 2015-16 (NFHS-4), Bihar is India’s poorest state with 43 percent incidence of Multidimensional Poverty (MDP) and having more than 50% households in the bottom wealth quintile. Despite India being the fastest growing economies of the world, its many states are entrapped in grim poverty. On the one hand, India is home to megacities like Mumbai, Bengaluru, and Delhi, where the majority of people have access to a decent standard of living; on the other hand, there are several states in India where people are not having access to the basic amenities and are living below poverty line.
The National Family Health Survey 2015-16 (NFHS-4) was conducted by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare on around 6 lakh households in India and described poverty as a large rural phenomenon. The report was based on the scores on ownership of consumer goods and household characteristics like clean drinking water. It then uses this information to classify all households into wealth quintiles.
Reasons why Bihar is the poorest state
It is the third-most populous state after Uttar Pradesh and Maharashtra. According to the 2011 Census, the population of Bihar was 103 million, which was about 8.58 percent of the total population of the country. Half of the population of Bihar is living below the poverty line.
- The poverty level in this state is around 43%.
- The state also has the highest density of population of over 1,000 persons per sq km
- Lack of institutional and technological advancements in agriculture.
- Bihar has a literacy rate of 63.82% which is the lowest among all the states of India.