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Economic Survey 2016-17 for IAS Prelims: Income, Health, and Fertility

Feb 20, 2017 18:15 IST

    Economy Survey 2016-17

    Habit of practicing a large number of  Economic Survey 2016-17 based IAS questions are going to help a lot to IAS aspirants for the upcoming IAS Prelims Exam of 2017. Here, we have provided Economic Survey 2016-17 based IAS questions quite useful for IAS Prelims Exam preparation.

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    1. Which of the following statements correctly defines the term ‘life expectancy at birth’?
    a. It indicates the number of years a newborn would live if prevailing patterns of mortality at the time of its birth were to stay the same throughout its life.
    b. It indicates the number of infants dying before reaching one year of age, per 1,000 live births in a given year.
    c. It indicates the number of children that would be born to a woman if she were to live to the end of her childbearing years and bear children in accordance with age-specific fertility rates in a given year.
    d. None of the above

    Answer: a

    Explanation:

    Life expectancy at birth (LE) indicates the number of years a newborn would live if prevailing patterns of mortality at the time of its birth were to stay the same throughout its life. Infant mortality rate (IMR) is defined as the number of infants dying before reaching one year of age, per 1,000 live births in a given year. Total fertility rate (TFR) is defined as the number of children that would be born to a woman if she were to live to the end of her childbearing years and bear children in accordance with age-specific fertility rates in a given year.

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    2. Consider the following statements regarding health and demographic indicators in India:
    I. There have been dramatic improvements- over the last 3 decades, the poorest performer (UP) has increased its life expectancy by 13.8 years, reduced its IMR by 99 points, and lowered its TFR by 2.5 points (with a level of 3.2 TFR in 2014).
    II. The corresponding numbers for the median state are: a rise in life expectancy by 12.5 years (West Bengal), a fall in IMR by 36 points (Karnataka), and a drop in TFR by 1.8 points (Assam).

    Which of the following statement(s) is/are correct?
    a. Only I
    b. Only II
    c. Both I and II
    d. Neither I nor II

    Answer: c

    Explanation:

    Across the health and demographic indicators in India, there have been dramatic improvements- over the last 3 decades, the poorest performer (UP) has increased its life expectancy by 13.8 years, reduced its IMR by 99 points, and lowered its TFR by 2.5 points (with a level of 3.2 TFR in 2014). The corresponding numbers for the median state are: a rise in life expectancy by 12.5 years (West Bengal), a fall in IMR by 36 points (Karnataka), and a drop in TFR by 1.8 points (Assam).

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    3. India’s low levels of expenditures on health (and education) have been the subject of criticism. Consider the following statements regarding the health convergence within India:
    I. Intuitively, the faster progress will occur not least because many medical “technologies” such as antibiotics and other medical practices are commonly available across the world and India.
    II. In India there are there are much clearer bounds on health indicators that would naturally lead to convergence.

    Which of the following statement(s) is/are correct?
    a. Only I
    b. Only II
    c. Both I and II
    d. Neither I nor II

    Answer: c

    Explanation:

    India’s low levels of expenditures on health (and education) have been the subject of criticism. It is worth understanding states' health and demographic outcomes since the 1980s. Two such key indicators are life expectancy at birth and infant mortality rate. There are two primary reasons to expect convergence in these key health indicators. Intuitively, the worse the initial situation, the faster progress will occur not least because many medical “technologies” such as antibiotics and other medical practices are commonly available across the world and India.

    Second is a measurement issue, there are much clearer bounds on health indicators that would naturally lead to convergence. For instance, once a country has reduced its infant mortality to near zero, it is fundamentally impossible for it to experience a drastic reduction while countries with high mortality rates have much more room for improvement. This type of natural limit found in LE and IMR does not exist for income or consumption.

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    4. Consider the following statements regarding the convergence of life expectancy (LE) and infant mortality rate (IMR) in India:
    I. On both indicators i.e. LE and IMR of health, there is strong evidence of convergence within India.
    II. The fact that convergence is occurring in key health indicators within India suggests that there are no traps of the sort described earlier that prevent technologies from flowing freely within the country.
    III. In LE, the Indian states are doing about the same or better on average than their international counterparts (they are mostly above the line of best fit); but for IMR, most states look worse in this international comparison.

    Which of the following statement(s) is/are correct?
    a. Only I
    b. I and II
    c. II and III
    d. All of the above

    Answer: d
    Explanation:

    There is convergence within India on the two health outcomes and India does not fare too badly in the 2000s compared to other countries. Another key comparison—which gives a sense of long-run performance—is simply to compare the level of these two outcomes today against a country’s level of per capita GDP. In LE, the Indian states are doing about the same or better on average than their international counterparts (they are mostly above the line of best fit); but for IMR, most states look worse in this international comparison. On both indicators i.e. LE and IMR of health, there is strong evidence of convergence within India. The fact that convergence is occurring in key health indicators within India suggests that there are no traps of the sort described earlier that prevent technologies from flowing freely within the country.

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    5. In India perhaps one of the most striking developments over the past decade has been in fertility. Which of the following statements is/are correct regarding India’s performance in fertility?
    a. 12 Indian states out of the reporting 23 states have reached levels of fertility that are below the replacement rate.
    b. Like in the case of LE and IMR but unlike income, there is evidence of strong convergence across the states.
    c. The state like Bihar, UP, MP and Rajasthan are in fact posting much stronger fertility declines than is true of the average country.
    d. All of the above

    Answer: d

    Explanation:

    Perhaps one of the most striking developments over the past decade has been in fertility. First, 12 Indian states out of the reporting 23 states have reached levels of fertility that are below the replacement rate. Second, like in the case of LE and IMR but unlike income, there is evidence of strong convergence across the states. Again, all the Indian states (with the exception of Kerala) lie below the line of best fit, suggesting that they are performing much “better” (in the sense of more rapid fertility declines) than countries on average. The extent to which they are doing better is striking especially for the high TFR states such as Bihar, UP, MP and Rajasthan. These states are in fact posting much stronger fertility declines than is true of the average country.

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