Suggestive measures to reduce poverty

Despite the concern evident in many of the government documents and UN documents and statements regarding poverty reduction in India, there remains a chasm between goals and targets and their achievement in terms of winning the ‘fight to end poverty, squalor, ignorance and disease.’

Poverty can lead to under nourishment and because of the harm it does to the children’s survival and potential, it locks the future generations.

In this context, these could be some measures which should be taken up to reduce poverty in India:

  • Public provisioning of quality health care can go a long way to reducing vulnerability to ill-health and impoverishment or chronic poverty that may follow.
  • Access to education and skills, creation of infrastructure at the rural level and access to assets enable exit from poverty.
  • Create a dedicated cadre of poverty eradication workers and officers, trained to identify drivers and maintainers and potential interrupters of poverty.
  • Identify the poorest and ensure they are linked with relevant government programmes for social protection and interrupt their poverty, and identify potential opportunities for employment and skill development.
  • Universalize access to schemes in the poorest districts so as to minimize exclusion errors and reduce administrative burdens.
  • Agricultural growth both in terms of quality as well as quantity.
  • To high rate of economic growth, the pattern and sources of growth and the manner in which its benefits are distributed are extremely important for poverty reduction. Productive employment plays a crucial role in this context.
  • While economic growth is a necessary condition for poverty reduction at rapid and sustained rate, it is not sufficient.
  • Growth alone will not make a dent in either rural or urban poverty, or that it will take too long. It is important to take cognizance of poverty dynamics and to focus attention on factors that can prevent persistence of poverty, enable exit from it and prevent entry into it.
  • A stronger institutional home is needed for anti-poverty policy, such as National Commission for Poverty Reduction.
  • Improve the efficiency and effectiveness of implementation of safety net programmes.

Ministry of Rural Development is credited with some flagship programs that comprise a multi-pronged anti-poverty architecture and strategy of

  • Increasing livelihood opportunities
  • Developing infrastructure for socio-economic growth
  • Improvement of quality of life
  • Providing social safety-net to as many households as possible.
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