New Delhi: As per the survey of international rights group Oxfam, the richest 1 percent of India pocketed 73 percent of wealth generated in the country in 2017.
The report presented a worrying picture of rising income inequality in India.
Besides, 67 crore Indians comprising the population’s poorest half saw their wealth rise by just 1%, as per the survey released by the international rights group Oxfam hours before the start of the annual congregation of the rich and powerful from across the world in Davos.
The situation appears even more grim globally, where 82% of the wealth generated last year worldwide went to the 1%, while 3.7 billion people that account for the poorest half of population saw no increase in their wealth.
The annual Oxfam survey is keenly watched and is discussed in detail at the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting where rising income and gender inequality is among the key talking points for the world leaders.
Last year’s survey had showed that India’s richest 1% held a huge 58% of the country’s total wealth — higher than the global figure of about 50%.
This year’s survey also showed that the wealth of India’s richest 1% increased by over Rs 20.9 lakh crore during 2017 — an amount equivalent to total budget of the central government in 2017-18, Oxfam India said.
The report titled ‘Reward Work, Not Wealth’, Oxfam said, reveals how the global economy enables wealthy elite to accumulate vast wealth even as hundreds of millions of people struggle to survive on poverty pay.
“2017 saw an unprecedented increase in the number of billionaires, at a rate of one every two days. Billionaire wealth has risen by an average of 13% a year since 2010 — six times faster than the wages of ordinary workers, which have risen by a yearly average of just 2%,” it said.
In India, it will take 941 years for a minimum wage worker in rural India to earn what the top paid executive at a leading Indian garment firm earns in a year, the study found.