Criticising "twisted figures" used by the Planning Commission to calculate poverty, Delhi Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) president Vijay Goel sent money orders of Rs 33 each to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi, deputy chairman of the Planning Commission Montek Singh Ahluwalia and Delhi chief minister Sheila Dikshit on Wednesday, challenging them to survive for a day on that amount.
Goel said the Planning Commission's criteria that anybody whose consumption of goods and services exceeds Rs 33 in cities per day was not poor was really "laughable".
The Planning Commission on Tuesday had said the number of people living below poverty line had shrunk in both urban and rural areas.
"We strongly condemn the twisted figures used by the Planning Commission of India to claim declining poverty in the country. The criterion taken as a poverty line benchmark in the urban centres is laughable," Goel said.
"I am challenging them to try and spend a single day on R 33 if that is what the benchmark for the poverty line is. It is yet another cruel joke by this insensitive government. I do not think that anyone in the right frame of mind can agree to the government's calculation that R 33 per day is enough for an individual to live in a city like Delhi," Goel added.