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Backgrounders

Poverty : Background & Perspective

By Mari Marcel Thekaekara

 "When I see it I know it," a US Supreme Court judge once said cryptically about obscenity. It is the same with poverty. When all the number-crunching is done, the lines of poverty defined and redefined, poverty is about the adivasi starving in Bolangir or Kalahandi, the widow of an Andhra Pradesh weaver driven to suicide, the drought-stricken in Rajasthan. Their poverty can only be alleviated if there is a redistribution of assets, an even and rapid spread of healthcare and education, and the creation of sustainable livelihoods

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 Analysis

'SDGs set to repeat the mistakes of the MDGs?'

By Vineet John Samuel

Sustainable Development Growth

Without transparent and accountable governance, the Sustainable Development Goals will remain a feel-good wish-list for equitable development, says Vineet John Samuel.
On November 22-27 the United Nations General Assembly will meet in New York for the Sustainable Development summit, to acknowledge and put into action the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The Sustainable Development Goals have been created to supplant the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), set to lapse this year.

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Related Articles

'Prosperity and poverty: A rapid reader on inequality By S Subramanian & D Jayaraj
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Empowering the poor the McKinsey way By Rahul Goswami
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The India behind the new poverty ratio By Rahul Goswami
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Features

The poor fight to stay on BPL list

By Sudarshan Chhotoray

Below the Poverty Line (BPL)

The BPL survey 2011 and its inclusion/exclusion criteria has serious repercussions for India’s poor. The very BPL card that helped a person build a house under the Indira Awas Yojana will now see him excluded for owning a pucca house; the phone booth granted to the disabled will now see them excluded for owning a fixed phone line; a basic outboard motor on a fishing boat will knock a poor fisherman off the BPL list 

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Related Articles

MGNREGA performs poorly in poverty-stricken Orissa By Pradeep Baisakh
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A roof for the homeless By Kathyayini Chamaraj
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Tripura's tribal angst By B Jayant Kumar
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Books & Reports

Why poor rural tribals will remain poor for generations

By Richard Mahapatra

A new survey by the Chronic Poverty Research Centre identified 15 regions spread over six states where poverty is getting concentrated and chronic, and found that tribal and forested areas are likely to remain poor, with the decline in poverty among the rural tribal population going from 51.9% to just 47.3%

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Related Articles

NREGS must focus on creating productive assets: CSE study
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The reality of aid Dr Sudhirendar Sharma
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Rich countries' commitment to development slipping, says new survey
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Changemakers

Truth, people and a video camera

By Ashok Gopal

Activist-filmmaker Shriprakash's honest, powerful documentaries attempt to capture the struggles and aspirations of local communities in Bihar and Jharkhand

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Stories of Change

ATM cards for Delhi's homeless

ATM

A scheme to enable hundreds of homeless people in Delhi to save has given them an identity and a new sense of pride and achievement
The story of Nirmal Kumar Dega is one of despair and very little hope. Lying prone under the lone fan in a huge room at Ashray Adhikar Abhiyan (AAA), a rights-based organisation funded by ActionAid that runs shelters for the homeless in Delhi, Dega’s fatigue is evident. His lanky frame is clothed in a brown kurta-pyjama, his hair is dishevelled, his teeth stained yellow with tobacco.

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Related Articles

Identifying the poorest of the poor in Barmer
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Nuakala: Orissa's tribals spin their way out of poverty
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Crusading for change
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News

50% of scheduled caste population chronically undernourished: Binayak Sen

Dr Binayak Sen, recently nominated to the Planning Commission’s steering committee on health draws attention to starvation in India and says government policies are only adding to the problem

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Related Articles

Provide cooked meals and change child malnutrition parameters: HC
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Rules framed for stricter NREGS audit 
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New guidelines, hike in wages for MGNREGS workers
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Statistics

Some Indicators from the Human Development Report, 2003

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Statewise Poverty lines, Number of Poor and Poverty ratio for the year 1999-2000

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Incidence of poverty (in per cent) in terms of Head Count Ratio

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 By Mari Marcel Thekaekara

"When I see it I know it," a US Supreme Court judge once said cryptically about obscenity. It is the same with poverty. When all the number-crunching is done, the lines of poverty defined and redefined, poverty is about the adivasi starving in Bolangir or Kalahandi, the widow of an Andhra Pradesh weaver driven to suicide, the drought-stricken in Rajasthan. Their poverty can only be alleviated if there is a redistribution of assets, an even and rapid spread of healthcare and education, and the creation of sustainable livelihoods

Read more...

Without transparent and accountable governance, the Sustainable Development Goals will remain a feel-good wish-list for equitable development, says Vineet John Samuel.

Read more...

Increasing prosperity for small sections of the population has been misinterpreted as signifying diminishing levels of poverty for large sections of the population, say S Subramanian and D Jayaraj

 Prosperity and poverty

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Rahul Goswami rips apart the McKinsey Global Institute’s new report on measuring and tackling poverty in India

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Rahul Goswami questions the government’s recent claim that 407 million Indians below the poverty line in 2004-05 had by 2011-12 dwindled dramatically to 270 million

poverty line

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What has been missing in the heated debates about the poverty line is a clear enunciation of which basic needs should be included. The 15th Indian Labour Conference of 1957 might have come up with the most comprehensive criteria for defining the minimum wage required to meet basic needs, writes Kathyayini Chamaraj

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India’s new Below Poverty Line estimate based on the Tendulkar Committee report has been hailed as being much more realistic than earlier estimates. But does it adequately count and include the poor of this nation, asks Sachin Kumar Jain

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By Devinder Sharma

If successive governments had devoted just a fraction of the effort that has gone into propping up trade and industry into fighting hunger and malnutrition, India would not be ranked a dismal 66th in the 2008 Global Hunger Index

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The World Bank claims that poverty in Asia has been halved between 1990 and 2003. But, says John Samuel, the story looks good only until you see the underbelly of this economic growth - growing inequality, violence and pollution

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A recent paper in EPW clearly demonstrates the links between poverty and vulnerability caused by social identity in India. It also demonstrates the extent to which inequality is increasing. This is a recipe for political dissent, says John Samuel

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By Aseem Shrivastava

Global poverty estimates report the number of people living on less than $1 or $2 a day. But purchasing power (dis)parities suggest that it could be more accurate to say that the poor in countries like India are living on less than $0.20 or $0.40 a day, says Aseem Shrivastava

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By Dr Sudhirendar Sharma

The high interest rates and forced loan recovery practices of micro-finance institutions have been held responsible for the suicide of several farmers in Andhra Pradesh. It is evident that poverty makes good business sense to MFIs, writes Sudhirendar Sharma

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By Darryl D'Monte

The guarantee of 100 days of work in a year cannot by itself provide food security. The trick, says alternative technologist K R Datye, lies in using the NREGA not to build roads but to regenerate the land and create permanent rural assets which will facilitate sustainable livelihoods

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By Sharmila Joshi

Inequalities will persist if we continue to look at India's poor only as consumers

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By Rashme Sehgal

Rural India is in acute distress, crying out for food and work, says economist Utsa Patnaik. Rural Indians are actually purchasing and consuming less foodgrain per capita today than they were in 1991

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By Chandra Bhan Prasad

Is the government's Food For Work Programme really helping to 'empower' the poor? By paying for their labour in foodgrain the implication is: the poor are hungry, let them eat food. But what about their other needs including medicines, homes, schoolbooks, social emergencies...

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90.00  INR

By John Samuel

Fifty thousand people die every day of poverty-related causes in this world of plenty. Eight hundred million go to bed hungry. What are we doing about it, asked John Samuel in his keynote address at the World Social Forum 2005

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By Darryl D'Monte

This year's 'State of the World' report from Worldwatch places India as the country with the third largest consumer class, behind only the US and China.Yes, that's 122 million individuals with purchasing power. But they form only 12% of the total population. The rest can only gape at the tremendous disparities

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By P Sainath

Amidst the orgy of celebration over India Shining, P Sainath points out that the fastest-growing sector in these golden years has not been IT or automobiles, but inequality

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