2. The basket of basic necessities of the poor has expanded in the last two decades. Do you agree? Do you think the current welfare schemes reflect this transformation? Critically examine. (10 Marks)
पिछले दो दशकों में गरीबों की मूलभूत आवश्यकताओं की टोकरी का विस्तार हुआ है। क्या आप सहमत हैं? क्या आपको लगता है कि वर्तमान कल्याणकारी योजनाएं इस परिवर्तन को दर्शाती हैं? समालोचनात्मक जाँच करें।
Students are expected to write about the multiple necessities of the poor in the today’s time with respect to multidimensionality of the poverty. Then highlight the few government initiatives to tackle it. Also as question demands to critically examine students should highlight the loopholes in poverty alleviation schemes.
Poverty is a state or condition in which a person lacks the resources for a minimum standard of living. Traditionally, the term poverty refers to lacking enough resources to provide the basic necessities of life – food, clean water, shelter and clothing. But modern economists extend the basket of basic necessities to include access to health care, education and even transportation for example multidimensional poverty index.
Reasons for expansion of basket of the poor:
- Economic growth does not always reduce poverty or deprivation. Several studies have found that economic growth is not strongly associated with a reduction in other deprivations, such as child malnutrition or child mortality.
- Poverty as multidimensional: Poor people describe ill-being to include poor health, nutrition, lack of adequate sanitation and clean water, social exclusion, low education, bad housing conditions, violence, shame, disempowerment and much more.
- For example, an area in which most people are deprived in education requires a different poverty reduction strategy from an area in which most people are deprived in housing conditions.
Welfare schemes reflecting the new transformed needs:
- Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana:
- National Rural Urban Livelihood Mission:
- Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana:
- Integrated Child Development Program, Midday Meal scheme etc are also providing food to the needy sections like children and women.
- Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana (PMUY)
- Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana (PMGKY)
Despite such new transformed schemes is Incidence of extreme poverty:
- While a large number of poverty alleviation programmes have been initiated, they function in silos.
- There is no systematic attempt to identify people who are in poverty, determine their new transformed needs.
- The resources allocated to anti-poverty programmes are inadequate and there is a tacit understanding that targets will be curtailed according to fund availability.
- There is no method to ensure that programmes reach everybody they are meant for.
- Lack of proper implementation and right targeting of new scheme. For example due there is right to education policy with different schemes but due to digital divide and pandemic there is learning loss.
- There has been a lot of overlapping of schemes. Every year a huge number is added to the population pool of the country. This renders the scheme ineffective.
If the hurdles are addressed with effective implementation of decentralized planning and localized initiative, it can surely give positive results. We have to address the structural loopholes and build movement in masses for the inclusive growth and prosperous society.