India has avoided the deaths of about one million children under the age of five since 2005, according to a study, led by a researcher of Indian-origin.

The improvement is attributed to a significant decrease in deaths from preventable diseases such as pneumonia, diarrhoea, tetanus and measles.

The study, published in the journal Lancet, found a 3.3 per cent annual decline in mortality rates of neonates (infants less than one month old) and 5.4 per cent for those in the age-group from one month to 59 months.

The decline began accelerating in 2005 and was fastest between 2010 and 2015 in urban areas and richer states.

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