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India’s richest 1% corner 73% of wealth generated

India’s richest 1% corner 73% of wealth generated
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The richest one per cent in India cornered 73 per cent of the wealth generated in the country in 2017, according to a new survey that presented a...

Davos: The richest one per cent in India cornered 73 per cent of the wealth generated in the country in 2017, according to a new survey that presented a worrying picture of rising income inequality.

Besides, 67 crore Indians comprising the population’s poorest half saw their wealth rise by just one per cent, as per the international rights group Oxfam, which released the survey hours before the start of the annual congregation of World Economic Forum (WEF) in this resort town.

The situation appears even more grim globally, where 82 per cent of the wealth generated in 2017 worldwide went to the one per cent, 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 one per cent held a huge 58 per cent of the country's total wealth -- higher than the global figure of about 50 per cent. This year’s survey also showed that the wealth of India’s richest one per cent increased by over Rs20.9 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 per cent a year since 2010 -- six times faster than the wages of ordinary workers, which have risen by a yearly average of just two per cent,” 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.

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