New Delhi: Government's development strategy has worked well with initial estimates suggesting 2 percent decline in the incidence of poverty during 2011-12, the terminal year of the 11th Five Year Plan, said Deputy Chairman of Planning Commission Montek Singh Ahluwalia.
"The 2011-12 data is now available... One or two people who work on this have come to the conclusion that when the data will be finely available, the rate of reduction in poverty will be 2 percentage points," he said while addressing 4th OECD World Forum.
Ahluwalia said there was general agreement among the experts that poverty has come down in the country, though the reduction might not have been fast enough.
Between 1993-94 to 2004-05, Ahluwalia said the poverty has come down by 0.76 percent annually, "establishing the proposition that poverty is going down".
The rate of reduction of poverty doubled to 1.5 percent during the 11th Plan period as per the preliminary indications, he said, adding, the reduction, however, was below the annual target of 2 percent.
As per the Planning Commission estimates released earlier in the year, "the all India (poverty) head count ratio (HCR) has declined by 7.3 percentage points from 37.2 percent in 2004-05 to 29.8 percent in 2009-10.
It said, during the period, rural poverty declined by 8 percentage points from 41.8 percent to 33.8 percent and urban poverty by 4.8 percentage point, from 25.7 percent to 20.9 percent".
Poverty in rural areas, the estimates said, declined at a faster pace than in urban cities between 2004-05 and 2009-10.
The total number of poor in the country were estimated at 34.47 crore in 2009-10, as against 40.72 crore in 2004-05.