a1 Department of Humanities and Social Sciences, Indian Institute of Technology Bombay, India. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
a2 South Asian Network for Development and Environmental Economics, 32/25 Sukhumvit Soi 67, Bangkok 10110, Thailand. Email: email@example.com
The Indian economy has grown rapidly at 6–8 per cent per year since 1995 and planners aim to sustain an 8 per cent growth rate in the next years. Growth has created considerable optimism about India and its place in the world. After many years of little change, poverty appears to be on the decline with an estimated 5–7 per cent reduction in the late 1990s (Sundaram and Tendulkar, 2003a, b, c; Deaton, 2005). Life expectancy increased from 59 years in 1991 to 64 years in 2008 and the primary school completion rate was at 96 per cent in 2008 (World Bank, 2012). Economic growth has resulted in a boom in the manufacturing and service sectors, large investments in infrastructure and energy projects, and a soaring middle class.