Rs.25 per day poverty tag irks Aruna Roy
activist and National Advisory Council member Aruna Roy has
criticised the Planning Commission's view that its definition of
poor - those spending less Rs.25 per day - should be used for the
New Delhi: The
Planning Commission Tuesday told the Supreme Court that the below
poverty line (BPL) population in the country is 40.74 crore and
the poverty line for the urban and rural areas could be
provisionally placed at Rs.965 per capita per month (around Rs.32
per day) and Rs.781 per capita per month (around Rs.26 per day),
The Planning Commission in an affidavit said that the BPL
population at present touched by the public distribution services
(PDS) was 35.98 crore.
"If the Tendulkar (committee) poverty ratio for 2004/05 is applied
to the projected population of the Registrar General of India as
on March 1, 2005, the total BPL population would be 40.74 crore,"
the affidavit said.
The poverty estimates for year 2009-10 were being worked out and
the "provisional estimates suggest that the total BPL population
as per 2009-10 estimation may be lower than that which would have
emerged (on the basis) of Tendulkar ratio on 2004-05 projection",
The Planning Commission filed the affidavit in pursuance of the
May 14 order of the apex court bench of Justice Dalveer Bhandari
and Justice Deepak Verma, which said that according to the expert
group headed by Suresh Tendulkar at the price level of 2011, it
was impossible for an individual in urban and rural area to
consume 2,100 calories in Rs.20 and Rs.15, respectively.
The bench's order asked the Planning Commission to "revise norms
of per capita amount looking at the price index of May 2011 or any
The affidavit said that on applying price increase using the
consumer price index for industrial workers in urban areas and the
consumer price index for agricultural labourers for rural areas,
"the poverty line at June 2011 price level can be placed
provisionally at Rs.965 per capita per month in urban areas and
Rs.781 per capita per month in rural areas."
"At June 2011 price level, for a family of five, this provisional
poverty line would amount to Rs.4,824 per month in urban areas and
Rs.3,905 per month in rural areas," the affidavit said.
The affidavit said that the final poverty line following the
Tendulkar Committee ratio would only be available after completion
of the 2011-12 National Sample Survey (NSS) and this would vary
from state to state because of price differential.