The Bharatiya Janata Party may have found fault with the Planning Commission for reporting a substantial fall in the number of poor in the country, but its own government in Madhya Pradesh is using the panel's data to claim success in reducing poverty substantially in the state.
The Shivraj Singh Chouhan government on Wednesday said Madhya Pradesh has registered a significant 12% fall in five years from 2004-05 to 2009-10 against the national average of 7.3% fall in poverty.
The BJP government is also using the Commission report as a political weapon against the Congress.
"During the period from 1999-2000 to 2004-05 Madhya Pradesh was the only state where poverty had increased by 4%. In those five years, poverty had increased from 44.6% to 48.6%," the state government said, referring to the reign of the then chief minister, Digvijay Singh.
"In contrast to this, the state posted a decrease in poverty from 48.6% to 36.7% during the period from year 2004-05 to year 2009-10," it added on the basis of the Commission report.
The BJP government attributed the decline in poverty to augmentation of irrigation facilities, increase in agricultural productivity, 24-hour power supply to the industries, efficient implementation of rural development schemes including Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana (PMGSY), and prudent fiscal management.
According to the figures of Commission, as many as 13 lakh families have moved above the poverty line in five years from 2004-05 to 2009-10. The Commission also estimates that poverty reduction in rural and urban areas was almost equal in Madhya Pradesh.