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Poverty in India


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Why India is a poor country in spite of such great economic development rate.

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Poverty in India

  1. 1. POVERTY IN INDIA… TECH-51354 Submitted by: Nikhil Bhardwaj
  2. 2. POVERTY: A state of mind! REALLY? • Poverty is a state of a person in which due to scarcity of materialistic resources, (s)he is unable to meet out his/her basic necessities in an efficient manner and/or faces the economic inequalities in the society. •Following are the characteristics associated with poverty (mostly interrelated, but may vary for different cases): •Hunger and malnutrition. •No proper housing, unhygienic drinking water supply and sanitation arrangements. •Lack of medical care during ailments. •Illiteracy and/or no access to school. •Unemployment and uncertain future. •Lack of status and power in the society, thus no opinion and freedom to express.
  3. 3. POVERTY: The broken wheel of our country’s progress wagon • Despite tremendous industrialization and globalization, India is still a home for world’s one third poor- with 40.74 crore people lying under poverty line (Planning Commission of India, 20th Sept, 2011). • According to 2011 Global Hunger Index (GHI), India’s hunger percent has grown from 22.9% in 1996 to 23.7% in 2011. •Some facts and figures: • 49.8% of India’s 24.66 million households defecate in the open. • 78 million people in India are homeless. • 334 million people don’t have access to safe water supply. • 2 million children (74 per 1000 live births) under five die per annum. • 46% Indian children are malnourished. • Gross enrolment in secondary school is just 20% • Number of unemployed persons in India is 10.8 million.
  4. 4. POVERTY: A trap from past 200 years…. •With India emerging as a global economy and the country with youngest population, all eyes set on us, but what holds us back is the fact that a large proportion of our population is still poor. •How it all started? Way back during colonization period, the then prevailing British policies which discouraged trade, production and agricultural activities, traditional practices and education, so as to promote Britain manufactured products. According to 1911 census, only 6% population was literate. •Efforts to eliminate poverty were made various times during pre and post independence period. Nearly 13 different committees and commissions were constituted to make policies for eradicating poverty. The policies were able to curtail poverty in the country but never achieved set targets. •Where we stand now? Social indicators of well being have improved during 66 years of independence, but still 240 million rural poor and 72 million urban poor exist.
  5. 5. POVERTY: Why it continues… • Why the schemes to eradicate poverty weren’t successful? • Incapability of government to successfully execute the policies at various levels (as they are mentioned in the files) and invoke active participation of masses. • Inefficiency of Public Distribution Systems (PDS)and the subsidies in reaching the real poor and needy audience due to corruption and mismanagement. The scenario is so drastic that even the apex court has to intervene in between and order free distribution of grains rather than allowing them to rot in the granaries. • The ‘criteria for defining REAL POOR’ (i.e. Poverty Line) is not clear. Instead of empowering the poor and increasing per capita income, the politics revolve around shifting the poverty line and giving ill comments. • Although the economy boosted in past two decades after liberalization, but the labor employment have not increased accordingly because of rigid labor laws, in addition to which the apprenticeship and vocational training options are also not very easily available. •With unequal distribution of wealth and resources, and political powers resting in limited hands, rich turned richer and poor poorer.
  6. 6. POVERTY: A road to no where… • Unemployment: Recent government policies, international trade barriers and political lithargicness (in giving faster clearance to establish industries) have discouraged foreign investments in the country which has slowed down the industrial growth pace, due to which the gap between number of employable population and available jobs has widened, which has increased unemployment. • With population growth rate much faster than rate of supply of resources, and income remaining constant, the resources become scarce due to which poverty increases. • Illiteracy and dropping out schools: The lack of dedication in teachers, inadequacy of resources and infrastructure in the government schools are the main reasons why most of the children in rural India either don’t go to school or drop out in early days. The Mid Day Meals Scheme (which is major driving force towards schools) is also loosing interests after complains of bad quality food being served are frequently noticed. • Improper industrial orientation: Agriculture contributes just 18% to the GDP despite 60% population directly engaged in it which points out towards massive underemployment in this sector. Dependency on monsoon and old techniques prevalent in the fields, increases the chance of crop failure manifold, which in turn may lead to debt cycle and poverty.
  7. 7. POVERTY: Statistical Map… •There are districts in which more than 41% people live below poverty line. Most of these districts lie in the states of Madhya Pradesh, Chattisgarh, Odisha, Bihar, Jharkhand and West Bengal. They contribute nearly 61% of India’s total poor. •This is because of two reasons: 1.Uneven Growth: The eastern and central India have maximum natural resources, still they’ve the highest number of poor because the policies don’t favor these regions. 2.High Population: Most of these states are densely populated which makes effective execution of policies difficult. MAP: District-wise percentage of people living Below Poverty Line (BPL)
  8. 8. Economic Growth v/s Poverty Reduction (2004-05 & 2011-12) Relative Analysis There is stark difference between the growth figures and the dynamism in poverty reduction when measured on relative basis, as the states are very close to each other, hence for little change they moved several steps up or down. Sikkim & Uttrakhand shew rapid growth, whereas Punjab, Karnataka, A.P and J&K moved down by several steps. LEGENDS GSDP- Gross State Domestic Product. Good performers on top and the poorest performers at bottom. Best relative gainers. Significant losers. Good gainers. Losers.
  9. 9. Economic Growth v/s Poverty Reduction: Individual Analysis The individual analysis of states show that the poverty reduction is directly proportional to economic growth. Odisha, Bihar, Rajasthan, MP performed well , whereas Jharkhand emerged as worst player in both the aspects. On the other hand, the performances of UP and Chattisgarh were just a few steps away from satisfactory. Maharashtra and Andhra Pradesh performed extremely well in terms of both poverty reduction and GSDP. Karnataka GSDP (6.5%) is not too high as the situations are not same as they were during 2000’s IT boom. With lagging secondary and tertiary sectors, Punjab’s agrarian prosperity also isn’t able to sustain high growth.
  10. 10. Economic Growth v/s Poverty Reduction: Individual Analysis Despite such high GSDP, Delhi has such less poverty reduction because the poverty rate of Delhi in 2004-05 was already lower (13.1%) as compared to other major achievers. Even with such high growth rate and huge poverty reduction, the development of Uttrakhand is incomplete in many aspects. With increase in tourism in the state, its income increased, but the progress didn’t involved the environmental considerations, hence reversed in just one disaster strike (the heavy rains of June 2013).
  11. 11. Poverty Line 2004-05 and 2009-10: Comparative Statistics… • The all-India poverty ratio declined from 37.2% in 2004-05 to 29.8% in 2009-10 •Poverty ratio in Himachal, M.P., Maharashtra, Orissa, Sikkim, T.N., Karanataka and Uttrakhand declined by about 10% or more. • In Assam, Delhi, Manipur, Mizoram, Meghalaya & Nagaland, poverty increased in 2009-10. Source: The Hindu, March 21st, 2012.
  12. 12. Controversies: • The poverty threshold- The Poverty Line- is unclear and unacceptable to masses. The Poverty Line per capita per day, in 2004-05, for urban and rural areas was Rs. 32 and Rs. 26 respectively. (as per the Planning Commission’s affidavit submitted in Supreme Court on Sept. 20th,2011.) • Despite severe inflation in recent times, the poverty line was further shifted for 2009-10, to Rs. 28.35 and Rs. 22.42 in urban and rural areas respectively (Planning Commission, March 19th,2012). At this meagre amount, where it is impossible for poor to consume 2100 calories per day, arranging basic necessities is still bigger deal. This triggered mass criticism and furore.
  13. 13. Poverty Eradication Ideas & Solutions • EDUCATION: • Age Group 18-35 years: •Increasing literacy along with special vocational training and apprenticeship programs for less educated ones on wide scales can be quite helpful. •Flexible financial helps for higher education for all. •Schemes to instill Entrepreneurship within youth must be started. • More focus must be laid on practical aspects of studies and the latest technologies used in industries must be taught; curriculum must be revised (need of the hour). • Age Group 5-14 years: •Increasing strength of school-enrolled children and sustaining them by providing better infrastructure, quality learning environment and skilled teachers. •Starting apprenticeship schemes so that students can earn along with studies, and simultaneously support their families instead of completely dropping out of schools for earning money. • Regularize teachers for their compulsory and timely presence. • Mostly children skip schools to take care of their siblings. Therefore, Child care centers should be open within school premises where students can drop their siblings during school hours.
  14. 14. Poverty Eradication Ideas & Solutions • HEALTH CARE: •Encourage direct involvement of masses: • Government must start medical insurance schemes for poor and peasants where installments must be very less (like Rs. 5 a month). The money collected from these schemes must be invested in opening super-specialty hospitals near the rural areas and slum areas. • Rejuvenation of closed Public-Drug manufacturing units from the money collected through sell of shares of these companies. • Favorable Schemes: •Schemes to encourage Biomedical Engineering curriculum and correlated research in the colleges. •Schemes to ensure presence of doctors in rural hospitals and dispensaries by assigning duties to group of doctors (instead of specific doctor) on day basis. •Schemes to ensure prescription of drugs on basis of their chemical names instead of any specific brand’s name. •Increasing number of MBBS seats in medical colleges so as to cater future demands. •FACT: For given average annual turnover, Healthcare Sector has potential to provide maximum employment as it involves more direct and active participation.
  15. 15. Poverty Eradication Ideas & Solutions • EMPLOYMENT GENERATION: • The pace of development of secondary and tertiary sector industries must be increased manifold, because they have the potential of providing proper employment to large number of people. • Small Scale Industries and entrepreneurship must be encouraged. They must be provided with easier loans at low rate of interest. • Setup more number of Skill Development-Training Institutes to upgrade technical expertise and the schemes and courses must be publicized • Encourage industrial setup in villages so as to promote rural employment, and in order to stop migration towards cities. • Open the doors for foreign investments by removing trade barriers. • Ease up the labor laws. This will increase employment in both organized and unorganized sectors drastically. • REMOVE CORRUPTION: • Encourage e-governance. Make all the data (except for ones which are threat to country’s security) available online. This must include daily work reports of government employees, spending and earnings of government, records of all government contracts, etc. This would encourage transparency and shut all loopholes in the system. • Strict check on money launderings. •Quick grievance redressal mechanisms must be ensured in the system.
  16. 16. Some other solutions: •Decentralization of political power to grassroots levels. Benefits must reach the poor, and riches must be properly redistributed among the population. • The growth must not be based on fiscal deficiencies. • Active Community participation must be ensured. Compulsory social service must be introduced in the country. •Declare begging a criminal offence. •Public-Private-Partnership programs for poverty eradication must be encouraged.
  17. 17. Rays of hope: • India's poverty rate projected to drop from 51% in 1990 to about 22% in 2015. (UN Development Report) • Unemployment can be removed in 30 if 10 million jobs are created per year. • Urbanization to grow at 4% per year. Challenges: •Slum population is expected to grow at 5% per year, hence 12 million more slums by 2017. Conclusion: We have all resources to overcome poverty, but the only thing we lack is dedication. We need proper political commitment, willingness to serve the people, corruption free system and active participation of people to make things work in a better manner.
  18. 18. Bibliography 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11.,,content MDK:20208959~menuPK:435735~pagePK:148956~piPK:216618~theSitePK:430367~isC URL:Y~isCURL:Y,00.html 12. ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS: Special thanks to Mr. Rishi K. Mutha & Shivam Mutha Photography for allowing me to use the photographs clicked by them.