It's official. The whining you hear often is statistically verified. Nearly a third of Indian adults — about 240 million of about 700 million above the age of 15 — rate their lives poorly enough to be considered ‘suffering’, says a poll by leading global pollster firm Gallup Research.
What’s more, the share of adult population in the league has zoomed to 31% in 2012 from 12% in 2006, when the poll was conducted first. The poll that covered a sample of 5,000 people shows an increase in suffering across all income levels in the nation of 1.2 billion.
The respondents were asked to rate their current lives and future expectations on a scale of zero to 10, classified into ‘Thriving’, ‘Struggling’ or ‘Suffering’.
Income, education, and employment were the key factors affecting people's well-being, the survey said.
The poorest and least educated Indians are the most likely to be suffering, but suffering has increased among Indians at all levels. The biggest jump in the ‘suffering’ category is in the middle 20% population, where the proportion rose from 15% in 2011 to 32% at the present.
Nearly three-fourths of respondents perceived corruption as widespread in government. India also rated poorly compared with other Bric (Brazil, Russia, India, China) nations.
Only 12% Chinese adults were rated in the ‘suffering’ group, compared with 19% in Russia, and none at all in Brazil.
High inflation and a relatively moderate economic growth of 6.9% in the last fiscal seem to have taken a toll on many. “With economic growth expected to slow down further in Asia, the survey suggests Indians may be somewhat less prepared than their counterparts elsewhere in Asia to handle the economic pinch,” said Rajesh Srinivasan, research director, Gallup.