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Rs 32 poverty line cap set to be revised

Oct 02, 2011 09:05 PM IST India India

New Delhi: The Planning Commission is set to revise the Below Poverty Line (BPL) figure after the raging controversy over the Rs 32 per capita per day poverty line definition.

Planning Commission Deputy Chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia on Sunday met the Prime Minister for the first time since the controversy first erupted.

They discussed the Plan panel's affidavit which says that those who earn more than Rs 32 in cities and Rs 26 in villages are above the poverty line.

As per the affidavit, a family of five spending less than Rs 4,824 (at June, 2011, prices) in urban areas will fall in the BPL (Below Poverty Line) category. The expenditure limit for a family in rural areas has been fixed at Rs 3,905.

The number of poor entitled to BPL benefits, as per the affidavit, has been estimated at 40.74 crore, as against 37.2 crore estimated at the time of accepting the Tendulkar Committee report.

Officials in the Planning Commission have said that providing benefits to more persons would defeat the purpose of the anti-poverty programme.

Congress General Secretary Rahul Gandhi had reportedly asked the panel to do a rethink over their definition.

The Commission is expected to meet on Monday to relook into the matter. It may consider filing a fresh affidavit in the apex court. The next hearing is on the October 11.

(With additional information from PTI)