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100 million more Indians defined as poor: Reports

Published on Jul 7, 2014 8:03 PM
 
An Indian child eats local biscuits with milk in the slums of New Delhi on April 24, 2014. An extra 100 million Indians have been classed as poor by an expert panel that has redefined the country's poverty benchmark after a storm of protest, reports said on Monday. -- PHOTO: AFP

NEW DELHI (AFP) - An extra 100 million Indians have been classed as poor by an expert panel that has redefined the country's poverty benchmark after a storm of protest, reports said on Monday.

The government-appointed panel estimated nearly 30 per cent of India's mammoth population - or 363 million people - were living in poverty in 2011-2012, after raising the poverty line proposed by the Planning Commission, the top economic planning body.

The experts' report, which was handed to the government last week, is expected to spark fresh debate in India where hundreds of millions of people still face a lack of food and housing.

The panel's conclusions were leaked to Indian media on Monday ahead of this week's budget, the first for Prime Minister Narendra Modi's government which won a landslide victory in May on a pledge to revive the flagging economy and halt high inflation.

 
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