NCERT Solutions Class 11 Economics Poverty

NCERT Solutions for Class 11 Economics for chapter 4 Poverty


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


There are different categories of poor people like always poor, usually poor and churning poor. Calorie based system to identify the poor, clubs all these categories together and does not differentiate between the very poor and other poor. With this classification government is able to identify the poor but not the ones who are in greater need of help. This norm also creates a loop hole in the system when the policies directed towards a target group, benefit the other better off group. Further, this mechanism also doesn’t take into consideration the social issues that trigger poverty such as illiteracy, lack of access to basic resources and lack of political and civil freedom.

Question 2. What is meant by ‘Food for Work’ programme?


‘Food for Work’ is the poverty alleviation programme launched by government of India on 14 November, 2014. This programme was launched in 150 most backward districts of the country with the objective of providing minimal wages and food security to unskilled workers. Wages in this programme were paid partly in cash and partly as food grains. Men and women were paid equal wages under this programme. This programme was subsumed under in NREGA in February 2006.

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


Employment generation programmes are important for poverty alleviation in India because

  1. Large section of the Indian society is poverty ridden and is unemployed. Especially, in rural areas majority of population doesn’t have access to basic amenities like food, shelter, clean water, etc.
  2. These programmes provide minimal support to unskilled workers to survive.
  3. These programmes help in developing human capital by providing skills to unskilled workers.
  4. These programmes create assets which further help in social and economic development.
  5. Some of these programmes promote self-employment which helps poverty ridden people in becoming self sufficient.

Pradhan Mantri Swarozgar Yojana (PMSY), National Food for Work Programme (NFFWP), Swarna Jayanti Shahri Rozgar Yojana (SJRSRY) and MNREGA are some of the major poverty alleviation programme to eradicate poverty.


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


Problem of poverty can’t be addressed by government efforts alone, there needs to be active participation from people also. Creation of an income earning asset is one such measure which takes care of this issue. Income earning assets helps people in being self-employed and reduces their dependency over the government policies for employment. These income earning assets include land for agriculture, tools and instruments to start a self employment unit, providing training to develop skills to enhance the income earning capacity and providing cheap credit to setup small scale industries. These assets raise income of poor people and help them to fulfill their basic needs and live a comfortable life. This helps people to engage in economic activities and contribute towards economic growth. These also help in increasing the employment rate. Government has launched programmes like Rural Employment Generation Programmes (REGP), Prime Minister Rozgar Yojana (PMRY) and Swarna Jayanti Shahari Rozgar Yojana (SJSRY) which promote self-employment. Under these programme, government encourage people to setup up small projects and businesses by providing them financial assistance.

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


Poverty in India is multi-dimensional challenge and it has to be addressed strategically by the government. Government uses three dimensional approach to eradicate poverty which includes growth oriented approach, poverty alleviation programmes and providing minimum basic amenities. These programmes have not performed up to the expectation and haven’t led to any extreme change in ownership of the assets, production and improvement of basic amenities in the country. These approach haven’t performed largely due to

  1. Unequal distribution of assets (land) which has acted as major hurdle for these programmes, due to which benefits haven’t reached to the targeted groups.
  2. Amount of resources allocated to these programmes are not sufficient, keeping in the view magnitude of poverty.
  3. Dependency on government officials and bank officials, who are ill motivated, corruption prone, inadequately trained to handle the implementation of these programmes.
  4. Non-participation of local bodies and institutions in implementation.
  5. Non-participation of local people due to lack of awareness about these programmes.

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


National Social Assistance Programme (NSAP) was initiated by central government in 1995 to help elderly people and destitute women who have no one to take care of them. Under this programme these people are taken care by government, by providing them financial assistance in form of monthly pensions.


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


Unemployment and poverty are very deeply related and there exists a direct relation between them. In other words, it can be said that unemployment leads to poverty and poverty also at some level lead to unemployment. Lack of employment opportunities deprives people from earning basic livelihood and leads them to live their lives in poverty and indebtedness. If there are sufficient employment opportunities, poor people can break the clutters of poverty and raise their income. This can help them to access good education and health facilities and develop the human capital of country, which in turn would be beneficial in generating more employment opportunities and eradicating poverty. On the other hand poverty deprives individuals from basic necessities like food and education. Lack of food leads to malnutrition and lack of education makes the individual incapable to get lucrative jobs which can help them to brake the shackles of poverty.

Question 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?


I will apply under Pradhan Mantri Rozgar Yojana (PMRY) for assistance. Under this scheme financial assistance is provided to set up small businesses to educated unemployed from lower income families in rural and urban areas.


Question 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.


Poverty is a state in which person are not able to afford certain basic necessities like food, clean drinking water, shelter, health facilities employment. These conditions are common for both rural and urban areas, but have different reasons for existence. Indian rural economy is characterized on the basis of ownership of land and activities related to land. Mostly rural poor are small and marginalized farmers, landless labor and unskilled workers. These people either have a very small land holding or don’t have any land to work upon. They either are engaged in disguised employment or do not have any jobs. Rural poor also do not have access to any kind of capital or possess skill so that they can be self employed.

Rural-urban migration is one of the major reasons for unemployment in urban areas. Urban poor are basically unskilled rural poor, who have migrated to urban areas for employment but are engaged in casual jobs. They engage in casual jobs because they don’t have the minimum skills required to get employment in the formal sector and they are better off doing casual jobs compared to being unemployed in the rural sector.


Poverty Ratio (%)






















Source : Planning Commission

From the following table it can be seen that the rural poverty has declined from 56.4% to 25.7%, whereas in urban poverty has declined from 49.0% to 13.7% from 1973-74 to 2011-12. This table shows that the absolute poverty has declined in both the areas but nothing can be said about the shifting of poverty from rural areas to urban areas.

Question 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:

  1. Introducing policies for agricultural growth and poverty alleviation
  2. Policies for speedy development of rural infrastructure.
  3. Accelerating human resource development through opening new skill development centres.
  4. Growth of non-farm employment.
  5. Providing easy credit facilities for income generating assets.
  6. Providing access to job creating assets.
  7. Improving the Public Distribution System.
  8. Introducing new employment schemes for poor.
  9. Opening up of new primary and secondary schools with midday meal programs.
  10. People should be made aware about the different employment programmes which are launched by government for their welfare.
  11. New social security schemes should be launched for elderly people, destitute women and differently-abled people.
  12. Vocational training centres and skill development centres should be opened.
  13. Inputs for agricultural production should be made available at cheap rates or at subsidised prices.




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