India has “topped” the tally of under -5 deaths, with the highest number of 16.55 lakh such deaths in 2011, says the UNICEF. About 19,000 children under 5 die every day across the world. Singapore with a mortality rate of 2.6 has the lowest number of under-5 deaths.
The 'Child Mortality Estimates Report 2012' released by UNICEF says that in 2011, around 50 % of global under-5 deaths occurred in India, Nigeria, Congo, Pakistan and China. Incidentally, India's toll is higher than those of Nigeria, Congo and Pakistan put together. There were 7.56 lakh deaths in Nigeria last year, Congo accounted for 4.65 lakh deaths and Pakistan had 3.52 lakh deaths of under-5 children during 2011.
The report also says that globally, pneumonia is the leading killer of under -5 children, causing 18% of all such deaths - roughly 13 lakh deaths in 2011, with the bulk in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia. Globally, the five leading causes of deaths among under -5 children are – pneumonia (18 %), premature birth complications (14%), diarrhoea (11 %), intrapartum-related complications (9%) and malaria (7%). Besides, more than a third of such deaths are due to under-nutrition.