Years of successive government efforts might be bearing fruit in eradicating one of the worst evils in the country, as, according to Finance Minister Arun Jaitley India will be completely free of extreme poverty soon on account of economic expansion.
Poverty is one of the major evils India has been fighting for ages. Various governments in the past have used several policy measures to target the same.
Fast economic growth and rapid urbanisation would slash the number of people in extreme poverty by 2021 and end it completely in the decade after that, Arun Jaitley said on Monday. “Urbanisation will increase, the size of the middle-class will grow and the economy will expand manifolds,” Jaitley said in a Facebook post. This will add jobs and benefit all sections of the society.
Extreme poverty refers to a severe lack of access to education, healthcare, electricity, sanitation and clean water, according to Brookings. A decline in poverty has also been noted by Brookings Report 2018 which said that India is sliding down the global poverty ranking and is no longer home to the world’s most poor.
In 2011, more than 21 per cent of India’s population lived on less than $1.90 a day, according to the World Bank. This ratio will reduce to 15 per cent in the next three years and to a negligible level in a decade after that, Arun Jaitley said. Economic growth in recent years had generated enough revenue for states to work more on poverty alleviation, job creation and improving healthcare and education, he added.
Pointing out towards the rise in unemployment as shown by the leaked data of NSSO, which had put the unemployment at 45- year high in 2017-18, he said: “Economic problems could be addressed as India remained the world’s fastest growing major economy.”
Meanwhile, India’s success in reduction in poverty was also pointed by the Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI) 2018 released by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Oxford Poverty and Human Development Initiative (OPHI). The incidence of multidimensional poverty has almost halved between 2005-06 and 2015-16, which dropped down from 54.7 percent to 27.5 percent, according to the MPI 2018 report.
Although the data show commendable improvement in poverty reduction in the country, there is a long road ahead as 364 million Indians continue to experience acute deprivations in health, nutrition, schooling and sanitation, according to the MPI REport 2018. Just over one in four multidimensionally poor people in India are under ten years of age, it added.
Source : PTI