While Inflation has accelerated to the highest in a little over a year;the Planning Commission makes absolutely ludicrous suggestions to the Supreme Court of the Country saying "Spend Rs 32 a day? you can't be poor!!!!!!..." SERIOUSLY ARE YOU KIDDING ME??
Quoting from the article on the Planning Commission's recommendations:
"Updating the poverty line cut-off figures, the commission said those spending in excess of Rs 32 a day in urban areas or Rs 26 a day in villages will no longer be eligible to draw benefits of central and state government welfare schemes meant for those living below the poverty line....
While the prices of all essential commodities rise at alarming rates;these recommendations are anything but farce. What will the standard of living of a person be say who spends a little over Rs 26 a day ; how and on what basis can the planning commission say that the person is not poor and not eligible for subsidized rations???
"According to the new criterion suggested by the planners, if a family of four in Mumbai, Delhi, Bangalore or Chennai is spending anything more than Rs 3,860 per month on its members, it would not be considered poor....
" This is outrageous because in such cities cost of living is so high that even feeding all the four members of the family for the entire month with a mediocre amount of something over Rs. 3,860 is a stretch...And why just cities;I think anywhere its too much of an ask.
They go on further to add that "As for health care, according to the Planning Commission, Rs 39.70 per month is sufficient to stay healthy. On education, the plan panel feels those spending 99 paise a day or Rs 29.60 a month in cities are doing well enough not to need any help. Similarly, one could be considered not poor if he or she spends more than Rs 61.30 a month on clothing, Rs 9.6 on footwear and another Rs 28.80 on other personal items.
" Are these figures even relevant in the India we live in today...??How can one person spending more than Rs 29.60 a month on education be considered well off...?? Has Health Care become so affordable that the figure given here is relevant in today's day and age?
What next?How many fruits per day or per month counts as being above or below poverty line?How many members of a family living in one room does not count as being below the poverty line?At which standard a person can drop out from school to be counted as above poverty line?What level of medical facilities availed decides whether he or she is above or below the poverty line?
Food,Housing,Clothing,Health Care and Conveyance have all soared so obnoxiously that these figures are anything but relevant in the present scenario....To my view the government of India instead of reducing the "percentage of population below poverty line" are resorting to tactics of modifying the eligibility criteria to project the sudden reduction of the same...I will not even be amazed if at the next election campaign Mrs Sonia Gandhi glorifies this as one of the achievements of the UPA government saying that under this prolific alliance of hers the number of people below the poverty line have drastically reduced...
What I do not seem to get is someone of the caliber of Montek Singh Ahluwalia is the Deputy Chairman of this Commission and still such audacious recommendations...!
Its sad to see that more and more ministers at the helm are swindling thousands and thousands of crores and the Government finds it difficult to offer subsidized ration or services to the poor people of the country and hence resort to such antics...A report prepared by Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) and National Election Watch (NEW)states that the UPA ministers have become richer by Rs 3.3 crore in two years...So the Government manages to make its ministers richer...Good for them!! But it fails miserably in making the lives of millions living in dastardly conditions better...So what does it do...just manipulate figures to showcase it as its achievement !! PATHETIC AGAIN !! Nothing short of Organized Social Manipulation and Robbery is being conducted by the people at the helm of affairs in India...!
All that comes to my mind now is this quote-"The government, which was designed for the people, has got into the hands of the bosses and their employers, the special interests. An invisible empire has been set up above the forms of democracy."