Washington: In a new Gallup study on overall well being, India ranked 71 among 124 countries, with only 17 per cent people describing themselves as ‘thriving’.

Interestingly, strife-torn Pakistan whose economy is in tatters ranked as the 40th happiest nation in the world with 32 per cent of its citizens saying they are thriving.

However, the condition of well-being in India’s neighbourhood China was not better. With only 12 per cent happy respondents, China is ranked 92.

According to the study, which combined the results of Gallup's 2010 global well-being surveys, majority of Indians (64 per cent) describe they are "struggling" while 19 per cent perceive they are "suffering".

The surveys asked people to rate themselves between 0 and 10. People who rate their current lives a 7 or higher and say they expect their lives in five years to be an 8 or higher are considered to be thriving.

Those who rate their lives between 4, or less, are considered "suffering", while "struggling" respondents fall between the two groups.

In the list of 124 countries, Denmark topped as the most contented country as almost two-thirds of its residents described themselves as thriving.

In Bangladesh, which is placed 89 in the list, only 13 per cent respondents said their lives are thriving. Sri Lanka, which is ranked 114, has only five per cent people who consider themselves thriving.

With 69 per cent happy people, Sweden and Canada ranked as the second happiest countries, followed by Australia (66 per cent), Finland and Venezuela (64 per cent), Israel and New Zealand (63 per cent), Netherlands and Ireland (62 per cent).

Among the least contended countries, the African nation of Chad remained at the bottom of the list with less than one per cent reporting they were thriving.