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A Note on Poverty

By | Feb. 2013
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Income Poverty and Human Development Poverty

Around the world, whether in a ‘developed’ or an ‘under-developed’ nation, today there exist a group of people who are unable to afford the basic goods and services of human survival needs. They are unable to do so because of their inability to be employed or their inability to generate sufficient, or any income to afford the basic goods and services. The households belonging to these groups are said to be trapped in the ‘vicious circle of poverty.’ By being in this trap, the possibility of the households helping themselves resurrect and gather momentum to break this ‘vicious circle’ themselves is very meek. The government of India, hence, takes the responsibility of intervening with a ‘wealth re-distribution policy’ within its nation, to help a section of these groups to consume the basic goods and avail the basic services. The government does so by defining a criteria ‘BPL- Below Poverty Line’, qualifying which the groups will be authorized to consume heavily subsidized food and avail education and health services for free or at a very minimal costs. The government hence provides the necessary support to the qualifying groups to be able to break the trap of the poverty to survive at a recommended minimum basic level and to give them the opportunity to improve their standards of lifestyle. However, in defining the BPL qualifiers as only those who cannot afford the minimum recommended energy requirements from food, those households that can afford only the minimum recommended energy from food, but cannot afford the remaining of the services by themselves are excluded. Thus, our practice of mitigating the condition of poverty by virtue of income falls short by the very way we define poverty, excluding a large spectrum of possible income poverty. Economic opportunities are the most basic means for survival and hence the various attempts to mitigate the income poverty are essential. However, one should...

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