La crise alimentaire faite maison de l’Inde

SINGAPOUR – Selon des estimations récentes, la population de l’Inde atteindra 1,45 milliard à l’horizon 2028, soit la population de la Chine, et 1,7 milliard d’ici 2050, ou les populations combinées actuelles de la Chine et des Etats-Unis. Étant donné que l’Inde éprouve déjà des difficultés à nourrir sa population, la crise alimentaire qu’elle traverse aujourd’hui pourrait sérieusement s’aggraver dans les décennies à venir.

Selon l’indice de la faim dans le monde (GHI – Global Hunger Index), l’Inde se place à la 63ème place sur les 78 pays souffrant le plus de la faim, soit nettement pire que ses voisins, le Sri Lanka (43ème), le Népal (49ème), le Pakistan (57ème) et le Bangladesh (58ème). Malgré une amélioration notable de la situation au cours du quart de siècle dernier – son indice GHI est passé de 32,6 en 1990 à 21,3 en 2013 – l'Organisation des Nations unies pour l'alimentation et l'agriculture (FAO) estime que 17 pour cent des Indiens sont toujours trop sous-alimentés pour mener une vie productive. En fait, un quart des personnes sous-alimentées dans le monde vivent en Inde, soit plus que l’ensemble des populations de l’Afrique subsaharienne.

Plus préoccupant, un tiers des enfants sous-alimentés dans le monde vivent en Inde. Selon l’UNICEF, 47 pour cent des enfants indiens souffrent d’une insuffisance pondérale et 46 pour cent des enfants de moins de 3 ans ont une taille insuffisante pour leur âge. A vrai dire, près de la moitié de la mortalité infantile peut être attribuée à la malnutrition, une situation qualifiée de « honte nationale » par l’ancien Premier ministre indien Manmohan Singh.

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