We need to pull out 7 crore families from poverty: Sonia

New Delhi : India should take seven crore families out of poverty in the next 10 years, UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi said on Monday while announcing that the government was preparing a special package for the northeast and hill states like Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand, reports IANS.

We need to pull out 7 crore families from poverty: Sonia

“In the next 10 years we have to bring seven crore families out of poverty. This is not an easy job,” Gandhi said at a function to mark Ajeevika Diwas here.

About 30 percent of people in India were below the poverty line in 2009-10 – based on the monthly per capita consumption expenditure (MPCE) of Rs.673 for rural areas and Rs.860 for urban areas, according to information given to parliament by the government this year.

Gandhi said: “…by adopting the Ajeevika Mission, many states have proved that through women SHGs (self help groups), economical and social changes can be brought in the rural areas. “Seeing this success, it seems that now the Ajeevika Mission will have to be implemented fast across the country especially in central and eastern India.

“Today everybody has proved that this programme can free women from the curse of poverty. Such an emancipation is based on stable and self-made employment and not on the mercy and kindness of anybody. Our purpose is clear. We have to strengthen the women SHGs and their instruments financially,” she said. Gandhi said, Ajeevika, or the National Rural Livelihoods Mission (NRLM), had proved that social and economic changes could be brought about through women’s SHGs in villages.

“This shows that the Ajeevika mission needs to be implemented across the country with special focus on central and northern parts,” she said. She said a special package was being prepared for the northeast and hill states like Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand. NRLM was launched by the ministry of rural development in June 2011.

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