Studies show poverty in India is shrinking, focus now on growing the middle class

Study after study has been showing that India’s poverty map is shrinking. Earlier this year, the Brookings Institute report established that India has ceded the ignominious position of the country with world’s highest number of people living in extreme poverty, to Nigeria.

Now, the Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI), which measures poverty as a real experience in the daily lives of people, as against the traditional indices which remain focused on calculating the number of people who earn less than $1.90 a day, has a positive outlook on India in its latest report.

As per the index released by the United Nations Development Programme and the Oxford Poverty and Human Development Initiative, over 270 million Indians moved out of poverty and poverty rate almost halved in the decade from 2006 to 2016, dropping from 55% to 28%.

This suggests that India’s broad direction of movement is right. The reduction in experiential and statistical poverty can be safely attributed to the high economic growth India experienced in the decade measured by the MPI. Thus the credit for bringing down poverty undoubtedly goes to all the governments that undertook economic liberalization measures since 1991.

Though a lot has been done in the last 27 years, there is no room for complacency. India still lacks infrastructure, capacity building in various sectors and jobs, which remain the engines of growth. It has been far less successful in growing the middle class than China or east Asian countries. Meanwhile, aspirations have exploded across the country thanks to the telecommunications revolution. Neither the Centre nor state governments can lose sight of this fact....Read more


Source web page: Times of india

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