Article 370 Deterred Development In J&K? Statistics Prove State To Be Better Than Many Others
Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed the nation for the first time after the partial revocation of Article 370 in Jammu and Kashmir. He spoke on lengths about how this governmental decision would help the common citizens of the former state, which has now been bifurcated into two Union Territories-Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh.
“Article 370 was a hurdle for the development of Kashmir. The rights of all denizens of India are equal, and their responsibilities are equal too. The harm Article 370 did to the people of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh was never discussed,” he said.
Home Minister Amit Shah too had spoken of how Article 370 was posing as a hindrance to the healthcare, economic growth and overall development in Jammu and Kashmir.
However, in comparison with several other states, Jammu and Kashmir fares better on multiple grounds.
J & K Fares Better On Many Grounds
When it comes to life expectancy, Jammu and Kashmir had an average life expectancy of 73.5 between 2012-16 against the national average of 68.7. In fact, Jammu and Kashmir has one of the best life expectancies in the country, ranking third of the 22 states.
In 2017, the infant mortality rate in the state was 23 as compared to the national number which stood at 33. Infant mortality rate refers to the number of deaths per 1,000 births.
Coming to sex ratio, in 2017, there were 917 girls against 1000 boys. For India, the average stands at 896 against 1000 boys.
Healthcare situation also is better in the state as compared to other states. There is one doctor for every 3,060 persons in the state (as per 2018 statistics). The number is the seventh-best in the country. Delhi was judged the best state with one doctor for 2,203, while Bihar, the worst with just one doctor per 28,391 persons.
With 10.35% poverty rate, Jammu and Kashmir stood eighth, against the national average of 21.92%. Goa performed the best with the poverty rate of 5.09% and Chhattisgarh the worst with 39.93%.
The unemployment rate in the state for 2017-18 was 5.3%, while for the whole country it was 6.1%. J&K outperformed states like Kerala, Delhi.
Human Development Index is the composite index of life expectancy, education and per capita income indicators. In 2017, the HDI of Jammu and Kashmir was 0.68. It was higher than 18 Indian states.
There has been a promise of a better economy in Jammu and Kashmir post the revocation of Article 370. However, it is pertinent to note that the per capita Gross State Domestic Product of J&K for 2016-2017 was Rs 1.02 lakh, better than Bihar, Uttar Pradesh and Jharkhand, the three worst-performing states. India’s GSDP for the same time period was Rs 1.17 lakh.