Even though India's children account for more than one-third of its population, their interests have never been given priority. And their rights have been violated every single day. CRY UK's partner, CRY- Child Rights and You has compiled some statistics on the situation of children in India. This is based on its experience of working on a range of children's issues across all regions of India. The statistics are grim. What is worse is that very little is known of what it means to be part of such horrific numbers The task before society is huge and we at CRY UK believe that every member of our society should take responsibility to change the lives of these children permanently

There are 444 million children in India under the
age of 18 years. This constitutes 37% of the total
population in the country (Census 2011)


  • 1 in 4 children of school-going age is out of school in our country - 99 million children in total have dropped out of school (Census 2011)
  • Out of every 100 children, only 32 children finish their school education age-appropriately (District Information System for Education (DISE) 2014-15)
  • Only 2% of the schools offer complete school education from Class 1 to Class 12 (District Information System for Education (DISE) 2014-15)
Child labour and exploitation:

  • India has 33 million working children between the ages of 5-18 years. In parts of the country, more than half the child population is engaged in labour (Census 2011)
  • Every 8 minutes, a child goes missing in India – kidnapping and abduction is the largest crime against children in our country (District Crime Record Bureau (DCRB) 2014)
  • Over the last 10 years, crimes against children has increased 5 times over (District Crime Record Bureau (DCRB) Data Series)
  • Fear of failure in examinations in the second highest cause of suicides in children (Accidents and Suicide Deaths in India (ASDI) 2014)

  • The health indicators of children in India are among the worst in the world - only around half (54%) of the infants in India are fully immunised. More than half the births in the country continue to remain home-births (National Family Health Survey (NFHS) 3)
  • 4 out of 5 children under 3 years of age in the country are anemic (National Family Health Survey (NFHS) 3)
  • 3 out of 5 children are malnourished (National Family Health Survey (NFHS) 3)
  • Around 8.5 lakh children are estimated to die before their first birthday each year (Census 2011 and Sample Registration System (SRS) 2013)
  • Latest NFHS data shows that less than one-third infants receive adequate diet in all states in the country* (National Family Health Survey (NFHS) 4)
  • *Data has been released for 18 states and Union Territories
Girl Child:

  • 42% of married women in India were married as children (District Information System for Education (DISE) 3)
  • 1 in every 3 child brides in the world is a girl in India (UNICEF)
  • India has more than 4.5 lakh girls under 15 years of age who are married with children. Out of these, 70% of the girls have 2 children (Census 2011)

The statistics affirm that children are accorded a low priority in national policy and governance decisions.

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