Rural Poverty Alleviation in India: An Assessment of Public Programs

B.S. Ghuman, Gurpinder Chima


India adopted a centralized development strategy after independence. The development strategy focusing on high growth postulated that the benefits of such growth would percolate down and would mitigate problems of income inequality, unemployment and poverty. Empirical evidence of the 1950s and 1960s, however, did not lend support to this ‘trickle down’ hypothesis. As a consequence social justice (i.e. equity) was added as another principal concern to the development strategy. In the 1970’s, ‘Garibi Hatao’ (i.e. removal of poverty) was the buzzword among policy makers. With a view to solve the problems of unemployment and poverty, both the central and the state governments initiated a series of programs. The growing significance of poverty alleviation programs in planning evinced interest among scholars for poverty studies. The objective of the paper is to make an assessment of public programs for alleviating rural poverty. The paper is organized into five sections. In Section I, data and methodology used in the study have been explained. Public programs for rural poverty alleviation programs have been described in Section II. Section III deals with the extent of rural poverty across the states. In Section IV assessment of public programs for rural poverty has been made. Section V includes conclusions and policy recommendations.

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Chinese Public Administration Review (ISSN 1539-6754, Online ISSN 2573-1483)  is published by the School of Government, Sun Yat-sen University.