Muslims are the poorest religious group in India (Hindustan Times)

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The first of this two-part data series looked at intra-religious inequality among Muslims and found that they are as unequal a society as Hindus in India. These measures of inequality do not tell us about the material well-being (or lack of it) of Muslims as a whole vis–a-vis other religious groups in India. An analysis of the relevant numbers shows that they are the poorest religious group in the country. Here are four charts which explain this in detail.

Muslims have the lowest asset/consumption levels among major religious groups…

An HT analysis of unit level data from the latest All India Debt and Investment Survey (AIDIS) and Periodic Labour Force Survey (PLFS) shows that they have the lowest asset and consumption levels among major religious groups in India. Average consumption and asset values for Muslims are 87.9% and 79% of the all-India average and 87.8% and 79.3% of the average values for Hindus. Religious groups which have a population share of less than 1% have been clubbed in the “others” category.

See Chart 1: average MPCE and asset value for major religious groups in India

 

Which means that they over-populate the ranks of the poor in India

There is often a lot of dog-whistling about the population of Muslims increasing at a higher pace than other religious groups in India. While most such commentary is ill-informed – this was discussed in detail in these pages (https://tinyurl.com/2mhjxnn2) — Muslims do have an overrepresentation problem when it comes to their relative share in population among the poor. A comparison of relative share – among every decile class by assets; it basically measures the share in a given decile class divided by overall share in population – shows that Muslims are concentrated in the bottom half of India’s population and outnumber the Hindus in relative terms in each of the bottom six deciles…

This story was originally published in hindustantimes.com. Read the full story here

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