NCERT Soloutions for Class 11th: Ch 4 Poverty Economics

Page No: 79


1. Why is calorie-based norm not adequate to identify the poor?


The calorie-based norm is not adequate to identify the poor because:

→ This mechanism groups all people together and does not differentiate between a very poor from other poor making it difficult to identify who are the most needy.
→ The norm only uses expenditure on food and some selected few items as basis of estimating poor.

→ This norm does not consider various important factors that are associated with poverty. These factors are health care, clean drinking water, proper sanitation and basic education.

→ It also fails to account for social factors that exaggerate and worsen poverty like ill health, lack of access to resources, lack of civil and political freedom, etc.

2. What is meant by 'Food for Work' programme?


'Food for Work' programme was started in 1970s to raise the standard of living of poors. These poverty alleviation programme aimed to raise income and employment for the poor through the creation of incremental assets and by means of work generation. This programme wanted to ensure goods instead of money.

3. Why are employment generation programmes important in poverty alleviation in India?


The employment generation programme are important in poverty alleviation in India because:

→ It gives an opportunity to the poor to raise their income through government supported schemes.

→ Increase in income give access to higher standard of living and greater accessibility to education, better health facilities, proper sanitation, etc. to the poor.

→ These programmes also create additional assets by means of work generation.

4. How can creation of income earning assets address the problem of poverty?


By creating income earning assets, we can generate employment opportunities through which poors can raise their income which ultimately helpful in improving standard of living. Thereby, it address the problem of poverty.

5. The three dimensional attack on poverty adopted by the government has not succeeded in poverty alleviation in India. Comment.


The three dimensional approach of economic growth, employment generation and alleviating poverty could not achieve the desired result. Although there has been a reduction in the percentage of absolute poor in some of the states but still the poor people lack basic amenities, literacy, and nourishment. This is because of

→ Unequal distribution of land and other assets among rich and poor farmers.

→ Improper implementation of poverty alleviation programmes by ill-motivated and inadequately trained bureaucrats further worsened the situation.

→ Corruption along with the inclination towards interest of elites led to an inefficient and misallocation of scarce resources.

6. What programmes has the government adopted to help the elderly people and poor and destitute women?


National Social Assistance programme is one of the programme started by government to help the elderly people and poor and destitute women This programme targets elderly people, widows and the poor and destitute women who are alone and have no one to take care of them. Under this programme, these targeted people are given pension to sustain their livelihood.

7. Is there any relationship between unemployment and poverty? Explain


There is direct relationship between between unemployment and poverty. Unemployment leads to poverty and poverty in turn leads to unemployment. Unemployment is sign of poverty It leads to hunger, gloom, indebtedness etc. An unemployed person has no means to earn money and cannot fulfill his own and his family's basic needs. He and his family cannot avail quality education, medical facilities and has no means to create income-earning assets.

8. Suppose you are from a poor family and you wish to get help from the government to set up a petty shop. Under which scheme will you apply for assistance and why?


For setting up a petty shop, I would apply for financial assistance under the programme of Prime Minister's Rozgar Yojana (PMRY). Under this programme, an unemployed educated person from low-income family in rural and urban areas can set up any kind of enterprise that can generate employment.

9. Illustrate the difference between rural and urban poverty. Is it correct to say that poverty has shifted from rural to urban areas? Use the trends in poverty ratio to support your answer.


The difference between rural and urban poverty is the nature of poverty. In rural areas, poor people are those who are landless agricultural labourers, small and marginal farmers. While in urban areas, poor people are those who are unemployed, underemployed or employed in low productivity occupation with low wages.

Poverty Ratio

Rural (%)
Urban (%)
Total (%)
2004-05 comparable with 1993-94
Estimates Source : Planning Commission Estimates (Uniform Reference Period)

Yes, it is correct to say that poverty has shifted from rural to urban areas. Above data show that rural poverty has declined significantly from 56.4% in 1973-74 to 28.3% in 2004-05 whereas decline in urban poverty (from 49% to 25.7%) is not that significant. Further, the gap between the rural and urban poverty ratios which was around 7% in 1973-74 fell to just around 2% in 2004-05 again signifying the shift in poverty from rural to urban areas.

10. Suppose you are a resident of a village, suggest a few measures to tackle the problem of poverty.


Being a resident of a village, I would suggest the following measures to tackle the problem of poverty:
→ Identification of poor.
→ Generating employment opportunities for the identified poor.
→ Free access to education and health care facilities.
→ Establishment of small scale industries.
→ Redistribution of income-earning assets.
→ Encouraging poor for their active participation
→ Organising Training Camps and Night Classes for imparting vocational training to unskilled labourers.
→ Advancing financial and technical assistance to establish small enterprises.
→ Upgradation of agricultural practices to raise productivity
→ Enforcement of measures to check population growth.
→ Development of infrastructure.
→ Motivating the poor to acquire skills, information and knowledge.

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