Question & Answer

Describe the steps taken by government to reduce poverty


Following are the steps taken by government to reduce poverty in India are as follows: 

• By accelerating economic growth:

The government tried to impart various methods for accelerating economic growth. They really expected that the poor will be raised above the poverty line with the various growth measures. While efforts were made to accelerate economic growth but they fail as they applied capital-intensive technologies of the Western Countries. Our nation is more on the road to the labour-intensive path of economic growth. Hence, fiscal and monetary were adopted that provide incentives for using labour-intensive techniques.

• By agricultural growth and poverty alleviation:

One of the most important factors is agricultural growth that can help reduce poverty. As per reports of Montek Ahluwalia commission (former member of Planning Commission), it brought clearly that agricultural growth and poverty are inversely related. As higher the agricultural growth is, it leads to lower poverty ratio. 

• By speedy development of infrastructure:

For the speedy development of infrastructure, an important measure is to generate employment opportunity and raising their productivity. Infrastructure development involves construction of buildings, roads, highways, ports, telecommunication, power and irrigation. It encompasses mainly construction work which is again labour intensive thing.

• By accelerating human resource development:

In addition to infrastructure development, poverty can also be reduced through human resources development. HRD requires better investment in areas of educational facilities such as schools to promote literacy, vocational colleges and technical training institutes to impart skills to the people. 

• By accelerating the growth of non-farm employment:

Rural areas are of special importance for the reduction of poverty and growth of non-farm employment opportunities. This type of employment can be created in sales, marketing, transportation, handicrafts, dairy farming, forestry, food processing and other agricultural products, repair workshops, etc. 

• By giving access to assets:

After independence, faster rate of population increase has led to greater sub- di¬vision and fragmentation of agricultural holdings. Lack of employment opportunities in factories, industries and non-farm sectors has deteriorated the conditions of agricultural labour and self-employed small farmers.

• By giving access to credit:

Credit availability for the poor and underprivileged on easy terms can create better living conditions. Small farmers can gain access to dynamic resources such as better seeds, good fertilizers, etc. Construction of minor irrigation channels such as wells and tube wells can be accelerated. 

• By proper public distribution system (PDS):

From the studies, it came out that households spend nearly 80 per cent of their income on food. Hence, an effective way of raising rural incomes and to ensure food security to the poor households, the government should world on an assured supply of adequate quantity of food-grains. 

• By direct attack on poverty: 

The government realised in the early 70’s that it is going to take a long time for economic growth to generate enough employment opportunities for the needy people in our country. 

 Following are some other plans initiated by the national government for poverty alleviation in India:

• Annapurna

• National Rural Employment Programme (NREP)

• National Maternity Benefit Scheme (NMBS)

• Rural Labour Employment Guarantee Programme (RLEGP)

• National Family Benefit Scheme (NFBS)

• TRYSEM Scheme

• National Old Age Pension Scheme (NOAPS)

• Jawahar Rojgar Yojna (JRY)

• Outlawing bonded labour

• Swarna Jayanti Gram Swarozgar Yojna

• Modifying law to prevent centralization of wealth

• National Social Assistance Programme (NSAP)

• Antyodaya Plan

• Rural Housing Programme

• Small Farmers Development Programme (SFDP)

• Pradhan Mantri Rojgar Yojna

• Drought Area Development Programme (DADP)

• Nehru Rozgar Yojna (NRY)

• Twenty Point Programme

• Self-Employment Programme for the Urban Poor (SEPUP)

• Food for Work Programme

• Prime Minister’s Integrated Urban Poverty Eradication Programme (PMIUPEP)

• Minimum Needs Programme (MNP)