2. Food Security In India
Who are Food Insecure ?
The worst affected groups are landless people with little or no land to depend upon, traditional artisans providers of traditional services, petty self employed workers and destitutes including beggars.
In the urban areas food insecure families are those whose working members are generally employed in ill paid occupations and casual labour market. These workers are largely engaged in seasonal activities and are paid very low wages that just ensure bare survival.
Social composition :
1. The SCs, STs and some section of the OBCs (lower caste among them) who have either poor landbase or very low land productivity are prone to food insecurity.
2. The people affected by natural disasters, who have to migrate to other areas in search of work are also among the food insecure people.
3. A high incidence of malnutrition prevails among women especially pregnant and nursing mother and children under the age of 5 years.
Areas of Food Insecurity :
1. The food insecure people are disproportionately large in some regions of the country, such as economically backward states with high incidence of poverty, tribal and remote areas, regions more prone to natural disasters etc.
2. The state of Uttar Pradesh (eastern and south eastern parts) Bihar, Jharkhand, Orissa, West Begal, Chattisgarh, parts of Madhya Pradesh and Maharastra account for largest number of food insecure people in the country.
Hunger is not just an expression of poverty, it brings about poverty. The attainment of food security therefore involves eliminating current hunger and reducing the risk of future hunger.
There are two types of dimensions of hunger -
1. Chronic hunger 2. Seasonal hunger
1. Chronic hunger : It is consequence of diets persistently inadequate in terms of quantity and/or quality. Poor people suffer from chronic hunger because of their very low income and in turn inability to buy food even for survival.
2. Seasonal Hunger : It is related to cycles of food growing and harvesting. This is prevalent in rural areas because of the seasonal nature of the agricultural activities and in urban areas because of the casual labour, e.g. there is a less work for casual construction labour during the rainy season. This type of hunger exists when a person is unable to get work for the entire year.