Thanks to state-provided food handouts, India has managed to bring down consumption inequality to a 40-year low, eradicating extreme poverty across the country at the same time.
“Given that extreme poverty has been eradicated, India should move from $1.9 PPP poverty line to $3.2 poverty line,” as stated in the working paper published by the International Monetary Fund, thus allowing more citizens to benefit from state handouts and programs.
The Modi government established the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Anna Yojana (PMGKAY), a program designed to distribute a fixed quantity of free foodgrain — 5 kg per person — to poor citizens on top of their usual entitlement of 25 kg a month of subsidized grains. Some 800 million people are covered by the National Food Security Act and the PMGKAY program which will be extended until September 2022. Through the pandemic, the proportion of citizens living in extreme poverty — estimated at less than 1% — remained stable.