Poverty Alleviation Programmes in India: Schemes for Poverty Alleviation, UPSC Notes

By BYJU'S Exam Prep

Updated on: November 14th, 2023

By giving families and households, who are below the poverty line, adequate access to food, financial assistance, and basic necessities, the Poverty Alleviation Programmes in India seek to lower the rate of poverty in the nation. Poverty has various aspects, and it is clearly a lack of well-being. Low salaries and the inability to obtain the fundamental commodities and services required for human survival are examples of poverty. Poverty Alleviation Programmes launched by the Indian Government facilitate lower levels of education and health, limited access to sanitary facilities, lack of speech, lack of resources, insufficient physical security, and opportunities to improve one’s situation.

The poverty alleviation programmes in India UPSC notes are important to prepare the Indian economy syllabus for the IAS exam. Following this article, you will learn all the schemes introduced by the government under the Poverty eradication programmes.

Poverty Alleviation Programmes in India

Poverty Alleviation Programmes are the type of programs launched by the government of a country to eradicate the existing poverty in the nation. The Poverty Alleviation Programmes in a country can be categorized in two ways, first, where the target audience is the rural people or rural areas, and second where the target audience is urban people or urban areas. However, most of the programs and schemes initiated by the government are designed keeping the rural section of society in mind. This is because the prevalence of poverty in rural areas is much higher than in urban areas. Learn the difference between urban and rural areas here.

What are Poverty and Poverty Alleviation Programmes?

The absence of the resources and needs needed to maintain a minimal standard of living is referred to as poverty. When the wages earned by a person are insufficient to cover the basic needs that he requires for a perfect living is said to be living in poverty. According to the definition given by the World Bank, poverty is a serious loss of well-being that takes different forms. Poverty is categorized by Low incomes and the inability to access the goods and services necessary for a decent living.

Poverty Alleviation Programmes in India PDF

A group of humanitarian and economic actions made to end poverty in a nation is called poverty alleviation. According to data released by the World Bank, extreme poverty, which now impacts more than 760 million people globally, is defined as having a daily income of less than $1.90. About 268 million Indians survived less than $1.90 in 2011. To end poverty and give disadvantaged households access to the basic essentials, the Indian government has created a variety of plans, programs, and schemes under various poverty alleviation programmes in India.

Poverty Alleviation Programmes launched by Indian Government

Since 1978, a large number of poverty alleviation programmes in India have been launched under which the underprivileged section of society is provided with assistance for reading their standard of living by various means. Following is the table that shows all the poverty alleviation programmes launched by the Indian Government along with the year launched and objectives of the Programmes.

Name Year


Objectives of Poverty Alleviation Programmes
Integrated Rural Development Program 1978 – The Integrated Rural Development Program is a combination of the Community Area Development Programmes, Drought Prone Area Program, Small Farmer Development Agency, and Marginal Farmers And Agricultural Labourer Agency.

– The prime motive for introducing integrated rural development programs was to eradicate the problem of unemployment, poverty, and hunger in rural India.

Pradhanmantri Gramin Aawas Yojana 1985 – To build 13 lakh residential areas for rural regions and to provide homes for everyone.

– To offer loans to the general public at reasonable discounts.

– The objective of this poverty alleviation programme is to increase the number of wage job possibilities available to households by offering both annual guaranteed pay employment and on-demand employment.

Indira Gandhi National Old Age Pension Scheme 1995 – To offer pensions to Indian senior citizens who are more than 65 years of age or over it and living in poverty.

– This scheme offered a minimum amount of ₹200/- on a monthly basis for individuals of 60 and 79 years and rupees 500 to people above 80 years.

National Family Benefit Scheme 1995 To give 20,000 to the recipient who would take over as the family head after the sole caretaker passes away.
Jawahar Gram Samridhi Yojana 1999 – Improving the facilities provided to the remote areas, like proper schools, linking roads to urban areas, and opening hospitals.

– To provide a long-term wage to the family who falls under the category of BPL.

Annapurna Yojana 1999 to 2000 This poverty alleviation scheme aims to offer food grains of about 10 kgs to older individuals who meet the requirements but are not currently enrolled in the national old age pension scheme.
Food for Work Program 2000 The Food Corporation of India provided free food grains to the states; however, after some time, the supply became inconsistent and slow.
Sampurn Gramin Rojgar Yojana 2003 The primary goal of this game was to create wage jobs, develop a long-lasting economic structure in rural regions and supply food and provide nutritional stability for the underprivileged section of society.
Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act 2005 – Every rural family is given 100 days of guaranteed work each year under this act. Women would only be eligible for 1/3rd of the planned positions. National Employment Guarantee funds will also be provided by the Union government under this act.

– State governments will also create sales Employment Guarantee funds to carry out the program. A participant in the program is eligible for a daily employment benefit if they are not offered work within 15 days.

National Food Security Mission 2007 The countries designated districts to produce more wheat, rice, pulses, and coarse grains through responsible area development and improved productivity.
National rural livelihood mission 2011 It develops out of the necessity to give the impoverished in rural areas work that pays a consistent monthly wage and to diversify their requirements. To assist the impoverished section, self-help groups are established at the village level.
National Urban livelihood Mission 2013 It focuses on uniting the urban poor into self-help groups providing possibilities for developing skills which give rise to market-based employment and assisting them in starting their own business by making finance readily available.
Pradhanmantri Jan Dhan Yojana 2014 This scheme under the poverty alleviation programmes aimed to provide direct transfer of pension, subsidy, insurance and other benefits in 1.5 crore bank accounts. The target audience for such benefits is the underprivileged section of society.
Pradhanmantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana 2015 This scheme focuses on the newcomers to the labour force, particularly the dropouts from class tenth and twelfth, and employment exchange.
Sansad Aadarsh gram Yojana 2014 To create the necessary infrastructure and institutional framework in three communities by the end of 2019.
Pradhanmantri Jivan Jyoti Bima Yojana 2015 The program offers life insurance to the underprivileged and low-income groups in society.
Pradhanmantri Suraksha Bima Yojana 2015 Under this scheme, people who belong to marginalized sections of society are provided with the facility of a life insurance policy.
National Maternity Benefits Scheme 2016 – This scheme ensures financial assistance to the mothers of those who are of 19 years or above, by providing them with 6000 rupees.

– This financial assistance is available for about 12 to 8 weeks prior to the birth of the child and also be available even after the child is dead.

Pradhanmantri Ujjwala Yojana 2016 This scheme ensures the supply of LPG connections to the 50 million families coming from marginalized sections.
Pradhanmantri Garib Kalyan Yojana 2016 – This scheme offers a chance to cowardly disclose unexplained black money while avoiding prosecution by paying a fee equal to 50% of the unreported income.

– The further 25% of the UN reporter’s income is put into the program, which is eligible for a four-year interest-free return.

Solar Charkha Mission 2018 It is one of the poverty alleviation programmes in India which ensures to set up the Solar charkha clusters in progressed sectors of India by providing employment to about 1 lakh people.
National Nutrition Mission (Poshan Abhiyan) 2018 – The goal of this scheme is to improve the nutritional conditions of children nationwide and lower the cases of undernutrition.

– Additionally, it helps to enhance the adolescent pregnant mothers breastfeeding mothers and young children.

Pradhan Mantri Shram Yogi Maan Dhan 2019 It is a Central Government that launched a scheme that was implemented for the total security of unorganized workers’ social security and safety in old age.
Prime Minister Street Vendors Atmnirbhar Nidhi PM SVanidhi 2020 This scheme helps street sellers with micro-credit facilities who have been impacted by Covid 19 epidemic.

Poverty Alleviation Programmes in India – Five Year Plans

There are several poverty alleviation programmes in India. In fact, eleven five-year plans were introduced to end poverty in India. Let’s take a look at these plans.

Five Year Plans Objectives for Poverty Alleviation
First Five Year Plan The plan focused on agriculture and irrigation and aimed to achieve comprehensive and balanced development.
Second Five Year Plan The plan emphasised the expansion of basic and heavy industries, generation of employment opportunities, and a target to increase the national income by 25%.
Third Five Year Plan The third Five-Year Plan was impacted by the Chinese aggression in 1962, the Indo-Pak war in 1965, and a severe drought, resulting in its failure.
Fourth Five Year Plan The poverty alleviation programme in India aimed to boost the national income and establish economic stability by decreasing disparities in income distribution, etc.
Fifth Five Year Plan The plan was primarily centred on eradicating poverty (Garibi Hatao) and aimed at lifting a significant portion of the poor population above the poverty line.
Sixth Five Year Plan This plan had the goal of eliminating poverty, with a significant emphasis on economic growth, tackling unemployment, achieving technological self-sufficiency, and enhancing the standard of living for the weaker sections.
Seventh Five Year Plan The objective of the Seventh Five-Year Plan was to enhance the living standards of the poor, with a significant decrease in poverty incidence.
Eighth Five Year Plan This poverty alleviation programme in India aimed to generate employment but ultimately failed to attain most of its objectives.
Ninth Five Year Plan This plan emphasised agriculture, employment, poverty alleviation, and infrastructure development.
Tenth Five Year Plan The objective of the Tenth Five-Year Plan was to decrease the poverty ratio and ensure that children complete five years of schooling by the same year.
Eleventh Five Year Plan the Eleventh Five-Year Plan aimed to decrease poverty by creating 7 crore jobs and providing electricity to all villages.

Poverty Alleviation and Employment Generation Programmes in India

As the name suggests, it is the aim of Poverty Alleviation programmes in India to eradicate poverty and its related problems. The Indian government has been launching different programmes in the past few decades to bring down poverty levels. Some of these poverty alleviation programmes and employment generation programmes in India are mentioned below.

  • Swachh Bharat Abhiyan
  • Pradhan Mantri Awaas Yojana (PMAY)
  • Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana (PMJDY)
  • National Food Security Act (NFSA)
  • Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA)

Poverty Alleviation Programmes in India UPSC

Poverty alleviation programmes in India UPSC topic is part of Indian economics which is a very important subject for the IAS exam. This is because Indian economics widely covers the financial and monetary status of the country and world, which is very important for an IAS officer to learn. He/She should be well aware of the schemes and other notable components of Economics like GDP, GNP, etc. UPSC aspirants can get detailed IAS study material here only.

Several questions have been asked consistently in the UPSC exam from Economics. There are many poverty alleviation programmes launched by the Indian Government. Following are the two sample questions provided to take reference of the type of questions being raised in the exam.

Q1. A number of Poverty Alleviation Programmes launched by the Indian Government. Which of the following does not contribute to poverty economically?

Choose the correct option from the given below.

  1. Unequal income
  2. Mass illiteracy
  3. Low agriculture production
  4. Rapid growth in population

Answer – Option 4

Q2. The second name given to the food for work program was-

  1. Rural landless Employment Guarantee program
  2. National Rural Employment Program
  3. Jawahar Rojgar Yojana
  4. Integrated rural development program

Answer – Option 2

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