- A poor deal
- Indian Journal of Human Development
- Volume | Issue number
- 4 | 1
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences (FMG)
- Amsterdam Institute for Social Science Research (AISSR)
The proposed upward revision of the poverty line has failed to capture the Janus-faced deprivation experienced by the poor. The methodological foundation of the proposed poverty line fails to overcome the discrepancy between the macro-statistics and the micro-reality. The proposed report on the identification of Below the Poverty Line (BPL) people suggesting the listing of BPL people through a self-survey is also fraught with problems since it assumes that the poor can make their voice heard and are able to ensure that their interest is represented, which is often not the case. The article argues that the question of human deprivation as a problem of methodology should not assume priority over the emphasis on political connotation in our engagement with poverty and policies of poverty alleviation. If this happens, the exercise of measuring poverty by adhering to the techniques of measurement would always fall short of the existing reality. The deprivation, by its very nature, cannot be based on a single line and the problem of this deprivation has to be contextualized in the setting of the larger socio-economic imbalances existing in the society.
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