Monday, September 01, 2008

Have Govts & Civil Society really failed at reducing poverty in India?

We keep blaming Govt after Govt, NGO after NGO about not alleviating poverty. Can poverty be really eliminated? Has any country achieved this utopia, even our favourite comparison - USA? If eliminating poverty is an ideal which we should all aim for but we all know is not practical, than reduction of poverty year-on-year is something we should aim for and evaluate our Govt and Civil Society on this parameter - reduction of poverty, rather than poverty alleviation.

A simple direct comparison between INDIA and USA on poverty shows us that after all, we haven't done so badly. We are only 9.61% behind USA in terms of poverty. They have had 233 years to work on it as against 61 years we have had since Independence. A lot remains to be done. We definitely need to bring down poverty to single digit percentage and looks like we should be able to achieve this by 2025, if not 2015. So we should take a moment and pat our Govts and Civil Society for their contribution in making this happen. It is really critical to take real stock of the situation and then move forward.

Comparison criteria INDIA USA
Years since Independence 61 233
Total population 1,129,866,154 301,139,947
Poverty line INR 1,500 $ 5,250
%age poor 22.00% 12.39%
Poor population 248,570,554 37,300,000

1 comment:

kamalchand said...

very good and informative article.This educate the people who always compare india V/s USA