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State Profile - Andhra Pradesh

  • The state of Andhra Pradesh in many ways reflects the development crisis of the country at large. The agrarian distress and poor social indictors seemingly remain unaffected by the otherwise impressive growth vis-à-vis a growing IT industry and increasing private sector investments in power, road infrastructure and industry.

    The state has introduced several welfare measures in the past and these have contributed to reducing income poverty in rural areas (Dev, 2006  ).  However, access to and quality of basic services in health, nutrition, education and sanitation remain poor – especially for disadvantaged social groups such as the scheduled castes and tribes – thus challenging the trajectory and nature of state sponsored development programmes towards a new thinking and focus.
  • Given the demographic composition of the state, where nearly 28 million of the population are between the ages of 6-18 (constituting 37%), the implications of a lagging social sector for the overall well-being of children in the state is a major issue of concern 

    While the state has been able to create a platform for women’s economic participation through self-help groups and over 5,00,000 groups are functioning across the districts, the full potential of the social capital thus generated has not been harnessed to impact the key social development indicators for children: such as all children in school, reduced malnutrition, IMR, MMR, improved age at marriage and other health and hygienic practices.
  • Even while the state is on track to achieve universal primary enrolment ( According to DISE 2005-6, the Gross enrolment ratio is nearly 100 %) the realization of the critical MDGs viz., universal completion of elementary education remains a concern for the state given the poor “quality” of teaching-learning being transacted in the majority of state schools.

    In addition, according to the ASER 2007 report nearly 7 % of all children between the ages of 7-16 are still out-of-school – technically the “last mile” which is correlated with increasing age, gender, disadvantaged social groups – hence older girls and children belonging to marginalized communities remain most vulnerable to being out of school. The equity challenges lies in reaching out to the Scheduled castes and Scheduled tribes groups comprising 16 and 7 per cent of the total population (Census 2001).
  • High rates of malnutrition are endemic to the state: 37% of children less than three years of age are underweight and 34% report stunted growth. Wasting is recorded among 13% of children and micronutrient situation is equally disturbing with nearly 79% of children suffering from anaemia (NFHS-III).

    While the state can boast of increasing private investments in health sector in the form of corporate hospitals, the impact of declining public investment in primary health sector is being reflected in key indicators: nearly one third of the child birth are still happening at home ( 31 %)  and the MMR is as high as 195 per 100,000 live births. Full immunization rate in fact has dropped down to 46% (NFHS-III, 2005-06) from 59% (NFHS-II, 1998-99) in the last 7 years.
  • While sanitation facilities among the households have increased to   47.8%  as of mid 2007 however at this rate, the state is likely to achieve full coverage only by 2014. The coverage of sanitation facilities in schools have also increased to 45.85%1 and but in anganwadis it is only 14.57%1. 

    To achieve some of the critical MDGs in the sector, increase in the rate of progress in coverage as well as usage of sanitation facilities in households and schools/anganwadis need to be enhanced as a matter of urgency.  
  • Further, high HIV prevalence has been noted in twenty districts and the latest estimation is that there are 550,000 positive persons in the state - approximately ten per cent of HIV cases in the country. Evidences point out that over half of new infections are occurring among young people of 15–29 years and highlight the importance of engaging with adolescent and youth.
  • The state is also consistently in the media with regard to issues relating to protection and abuse of children, including incidence of sexual assault and abuse among both boys and girls.

    Issues of concern include high incidence of child labour and large scale distress migration, skewed sex ratio, early marriage, trafficking of children for sexual and commercial exploitation and practice of female foeticide and infanticide. Coastal regions of the state are more vulnerable to disasters (floods/cyclones) where protection issues of children have to address infrastructural and emotional impacts of disasters.


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