NCERT Textbook - Poverty Commerce Notes | EduRev

Economics Class 12

Created by: Lakshya Ias

Commerce : NCERT Textbook - Poverty Commerce Notes | EduRev

 Page 1


CURRENT CHALLENGES FACING THE
INDIAN ECONOMY
UNIT
III
UNIT
III
2015-16(20/01/2015)
Page 2


CURRENT CHALLENGES FACING THE
INDIAN ECONOMY
UNIT
III
UNIT
III
2015-16(20/01/2015)
Some of the most challenging issues facing India
today are poverty, development of rural India and
building infrastructure. We are a billion-strong
country today and our human capital is the biggest
asset; it needs investment in health and education.
We also need to understand the concept of
employment and the need for  creating more
employment in our country. We will also look at
the implications of development on our environment
and call for sustainable development. There is a
need to critically assess government initiatives in
tackling all  these issues each of which has been
taken up separately in this unit.
2015-16(20/01/2015)
Page 3


CURRENT CHALLENGES FACING THE
INDIAN ECONOMY
UNIT
III
UNIT
III
2015-16(20/01/2015)
Some of the most challenging issues facing India
today are poverty, development of rural India and
building infrastructure. We are a billion-strong
country today and our human capital is the biggest
asset; it needs investment in health and education.
We also need to understand the concept of
employment and the need for  creating more
employment in our country. We will also look at
the implications of development on our environment
and call for sustainable development. There is a
need to critically assess government initiatives in
tackling all  these issues each of which has been
taken up separately in this unit.
2015-16(20/01/2015)
 After studying this chapter, the learners will
• understand the various attributes of poverty
 • comprehend the diverse dimensions relating to the concept of poverty
 • critically appreciate the way poverty is estimated
 • appreciate and be able to assess existing poverty alleviation programmes.
POVERTY
4
2015-16(20/01/2015)
Page 4


CURRENT CHALLENGES FACING THE
INDIAN ECONOMY
UNIT
III
UNIT
III
2015-16(20/01/2015)
Some of the most challenging issues facing India
today are poverty, development of rural India and
building infrastructure. We are a billion-strong
country today and our human capital is the biggest
asset; it needs investment in health and education.
We also need to understand the concept of
employment and the need for  creating more
employment in our country. We will also look at
the implications of development on our environment
and call for sustainable development. There is a
need to critically assess government initiatives in
tackling all  these issues each of which has been
taken up separately in this unit.
2015-16(20/01/2015)
 After studying this chapter, the learners will
• understand the various attributes of poverty
 • comprehend the diverse dimensions relating to the concept of poverty
 • critically appreciate the way poverty is estimated
 • appreciate and be able to assess existing poverty alleviation programmes.
POVERTY
4
2015-16(20/01/2015)
60 INDIAN ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT
4.1 INTRODUCTION
In previous chapters, you have
studied the economic policies that
India has taken in the last six and a
half decades and the outcome of
these policies with relation to the
various developmental indicators.
Providing minimum basic needs to
the people and reduction of poverty
have been the major aims of
independent India. The pattern of
development that the successive five
year plans envisaged laid emphasis
on the upliftment of the poorest of
the poor (Antyodaya), integrating the
poor into the mainstream and
achieving a minimum standard of
living for all.
While addressing the Constituent
Assembly in 1947,  Jawaharlal Nehru
had said, “This achievement
(Independence) is but a step, an
opening of opportunity, to the great
triumphs and achievements that
await us… the ending of poverty and
ignorance and disease and inequality
of opportunity.”
However we need to know where
we stand today. Poverty is not only a
challenge for India, as more than one-
fifth of the world’s poor live in India
alone; but also for the world, where
about 300 million people are not able
to meet their basic needs.
Poverty has many faces, which
have been changing from place to
place and across time, and has been
described in many ways. Most often,
poverty is a situation that people
want to escape. So poverty is a call
to action — for the poor and the
wealthy alike — a call to change the
world so that many more may have
enough to eat, adequate shelter,
access to education and health,
protection from violence, and a voice
in what happens in their
communities.
To know what helps to reduce
poverty, what works and what does
not, what changes over time, poverty
has to be defined, measured and
studied — and even experienced. As
poverty has many dimensions, it has
to be looked at through a variety of
indicators — levels of income and
consumption, social indicators, and
indicators of vulnerability to risks
and of socio/political access.
4.2 WHO ARE THE POOR?
You would have noticed that in all
localities and neighbourhoods, both
in rural and urban areas, there are
some of us who are poor and some
who are rich. Read the story of Anu
and Sudha.  Their lives are examples
of the two extremes (see Box 4.1).
There are also people who belong to
the many stages in between.
Push cart vendors, street
cobblers, women who string flowers,
No society can surely be flourishing and happy, of which the far greater
part of the members are poor and miserable.
Adam Smith
2015-16(20/01/2015)
Page 5


CURRENT CHALLENGES FACING THE
INDIAN ECONOMY
UNIT
III
UNIT
III
2015-16(20/01/2015)
Some of the most challenging issues facing India
today are poverty, development of rural India and
building infrastructure. We are a billion-strong
country today and our human capital is the biggest
asset; it needs investment in health and education.
We also need to understand the concept of
employment and the need for  creating more
employment in our country. We will also look at
the implications of development on our environment
and call for sustainable development. There is a
need to critically assess government initiatives in
tackling all  these issues each of which has been
taken up separately in this unit.
2015-16(20/01/2015)
 After studying this chapter, the learners will
• understand the various attributes of poverty
 • comprehend the diverse dimensions relating to the concept of poverty
 • critically appreciate the way poverty is estimated
 • appreciate and be able to assess existing poverty alleviation programmes.
POVERTY
4
2015-16(20/01/2015)
60 INDIAN ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT
4.1 INTRODUCTION
In previous chapters, you have
studied the economic policies that
India has taken in the last six and a
half decades and the outcome of
these policies with relation to the
various developmental indicators.
Providing minimum basic needs to
the people and reduction of poverty
have been the major aims of
independent India. The pattern of
development that the successive five
year plans envisaged laid emphasis
on the upliftment of the poorest of
the poor (Antyodaya), integrating the
poor into the mainstream and
achieving a minimum standard of
living for all.
While addressing the Constituent
Assembly in 1947,  Jawaharlal Nehru
had said, “This achievement
(Independence) is but a step, an
opening of opportunity, to the great
triumphs and achievements that
await us… the ending of poverty and
ignorance and disease and inequality
of opportunity.”
However we need to know where
we stand today. Poverty is not only a
challenge for India, as more than one-
fifth of the world’s poor live in India
alone; but also for the world, where
about 300 million people are not able
to meet their basic needs.
Poverty has many faces, which
have been changing from place to
place and across time, and has been
described in many ways. Most often,
poverty is a situation that people
want to escape. So poverty is a call
to action — for the poor and the
wealthy alike — a call to change the
world so that many more may have
enough to eat, adequate shelter,
access to education and health,
protection from violence, and a voice
in what happens in their
communities.
To know what helps to reduce
poverty, what works and what does
not, what changes over time, poverty
has to be defined, measured and
studied — and even experienced. As
poverty has many dimensions, it has
to be looked at through a variety of
indicators — levels of income and
consumption, social indicators, and
indicators of vulnerability to risks
and of socio/political access.
4.2 WHO ARE THE POOR?
You would have noticed that in all
localities and neighbourhoods, both
in rural and urban areas, there are
some of us who are poor and some
who are rich. Read the story of Anu
and Sudha.  Their lives are examples
of the two extremes (see Box 4.1).
There are also people who belong to
the many stages in between.
Push cart vendors, street
cobblers, women who string flowers,
No society can surely be flourishing and happy, of which the far greater
part of the members are poor and miserable.
Adam Smith
2015-16(20/01/2015)
61 POVERTY
Box 4.1: Anu and Sudha
Anu and Sudha were both born on the same day. Anu’s mother and father
were construction labourers and Sudha’s father was a businessman and her
mother a designer.
Anu’s mother worked by carrying head loads of bricks until she went into
labour. She then went behind the tool shed on the construction site and
delivered her baby alone. She fed her child and then wrapped her in an old
sari, made a cradle with a gunny sack, put little Anu in it and hung it from a
tree. She hurried back to work as she was afraid she would lose her job. She
hoped that Anu would sleep until evening.
Sudha was born in one of the best nursing homes in the city. She was
thoroughly checked by doctors, she was bathed and dressed in clean soft
clothes and placed in a crib next to her mother.  Her mother fed her whenever
she was hungry, hugged and kissed her and sang her to sleep. Her family
and friends celebrated her arrival.
Anu and Sudha had very different childhoods. Anu learnt to look after
herself at a very early age. She knew what hunger and deprivation were. She
discovered how to pick food from the dustbin, how to keep warm during the
winter, to find shelter in the monsoon and how to play with a piece of string,
stones and twigs. Anu could not go to school as her parents were migrant
workers who kept moving from city to city in search of work.
Anu loved to dance. Whenever she heard music she would improvise. She
was very beautiful and her movements were graceful and evocative. Her dream
was to dance on a stage some day. Anu could have become a great dancer
but she had to begin work at the age of 12. She had to earn a living with her
mother and father, building houses for the rich. Houses, she would never live in.
Sudha went to a very good play school where she learnt how to read,
write and count. She went on excursions to the planetarium, museum and
national parks. She later went to a very good school. She loved painting and
started getting private lessons from a famous artist. She later joined a design
school and became a well known painter.
rag pickers, vendors and beggars are
some examples of poor and
vulnerable groups in urban areas.
The poor people possess few assets
and reside in kutcha hutments with
walls made of baked mud and roofs
made of grass, thatch, bamboo and
wood. The poorest of them do not
even have such dwellings. In rural
areas many of them are landless.
Even if some of them possess land, it
is only dry or waste land.  Many do
not get to have even two meals a day.
Starvation and hunger are the key
features of the poorest households.
The poor lack basic literacy and skills
and hence have very limited
economic opportunities. Poor people
also face unstable employment.
Malnutrition is alarmingly high
among the poor. Ill health, disability
or serious illness makes them
2015-16(20/01/2015)
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