As per the latest data released by Government on 23 July 2013, Odisha and Bihar registered the sharpest decline in poverty levels between 2004-05 and 2011-12.
The proportion of the poor in these states remains well above the national average.
The government data reveals that in Odisha, the proportion of people below the poverty line (BPL) in total population came down from 57.2% in 2004-05 to 32.6% in 2011-12, marking decline of 24.6 percentage points.
The state of Bihar witnessed a reduction of BPL by 20.7 percent. In year 2004-05 Bihar had a BPL share of 54.4% percent in its total population which drastically came down to 33.7% in year 2011-2012. So, keeping the statistics as parameter Bihar registered the fastest growth rate during the 11th five-year plan (2007-12).
At national level, the share of the BPL population was estimated at 21.9%, which is almost 270 million in a population of 1.241 billion which means that every fifth Indian lives below the poverty line.
On the other hand, the government has set the bar low and had defined that anyone who earns 27.20 rupees or less in rural areas as BPL, while one who earns up to 33.30 rupees a day in urban areas are classified as poor, though these standard vary from state to state.
Some facts to be Known
• Bimaru,( Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, and Uttar Pradesh) state still remain home to the maximum number of poor people in the country.
• Uttar Pradesh has just fewer than 30% of its population in the BPL group, the number adds up to almost 60 million.
• Bihar, ranks second in poverty level despite the improvement, and has 35.8 million poor, followed by Madhya Pradesh where 23.4 million or 31.6% of the population is BPL.
• Among the Bimaru states, only Rajasthan has managed to do better than the national average with the share of BPL in total population estimated at 14.7% in 2011-12, compared to 34.4% in 2004-05.
• Rajasthan is enhanced performer than Gujarat, popular for its rapid growth and good infrastructure. Gujarat had 16.6% people below the poverty line.
• On National level, there were 217 million poor in rural areas and 53 million in urban areas in 2011-12, as against 326 million and 81 million, respectively, in 2004-05.