20.6        ndian    onom
          (i) Total poverty declined from 37.2 to 21.9   Kamao (Learn and Earn), USTTAD (Upgrading
               per cent.                                 Skill and Training in Traditional Arts/Crafts for
         (ii) Rural poverty declined from 41.8 to 25.7   Development) and Nai Manzil.
               per cent.                                      Other than implementing programmes aimed
        (iii) Urban poverty declined from 25.7 to        at inclusive growth, enhancing economic growth
               13.7 per cent                             and efficiency of market, as per the Economic
          Looking at the controversy and confusion       Survey 2017-18, governments need to assure
     related to per day monetary estimates of poverty    equitable accessibility of these benefits to all
     line criteria, late 2015, the GoI did set up a task citizens in this regard.
     force under the vice-chairman of the NITI Aayog
     (Arvind Panagariya) to suggest a new method         Accessible inDiA cAmPAign
     for poverty estimates. The report the task force is The number of persons with disabilities in India
     awaited (March 2017).                               constituted 2.2 per cent of the population (Census
                                                         2011). It is imperative to promote, protect and
        ProMotInG InclusIVe GrowtH                       ensure the full and equal enjoyment of all human
                                                         rights and fundamental freedoms by all persons
     The focus of the Indian development planning        with disabilities, and to promote respect for
     has been on formulation of programmes and           their inherent dignity (UN Convention on rights
     policies aimed at bringing the ‘marginalised and    of Persons with Disabilities). In this direction,
     poor sections’ of society into the mainstream. The  the Department of Empowerment of Persons
     government has been implementing many such          with Disabilities (DEPwD) launched Accessible
     programmes for social and financial inclusion.      India Campaign (Sugamya Bharat Abhiyan) as a
     The disbursement of benefits needs a systematic     nation-wide Campaign for achieving “universal
     channel which will provide for financial            accessibility for Persons with Disabilities (PwDs)”
     empowerment and make monitoring easier and          with a focus on three verticals—Built Environment,
     the local bodies more accountable. The Pradhan      Public Transportation and ICT (Information and
     Mantri Jan Dhan Yojna (PMJDY) launched in           Communication Technologies).
     August 2014 and the RuPay Card (a payment                The Government has launched an Inclusiveness
     solution), are important schemes in this regard.    and Accessibility Index as part of this campaign.
     These two schemes are complementary and will        The index helps the industries and corporates
     enable achievement of multiple objectives such      to participate in the campaign by voluntarily
     as financial inclusion, insurance penetration, and  evaluating their readiness for making the
     digitalisation.                                     workplace accessible for PwDs. The index enables
          We find an increased Government emphasis       the organisations to introspect over their inclusive
     on the socio-economic empowerment of the            policies and organisational culture in aid of PwDs,
     minorities. In this regard several new schemes      employment of such workforce and adaptations
     have been launched in recent times—the ‘Nai         to meet the needs of PwDs. Further, the Rights
     roshni’ scheme for leadership development           of Persons with Disabilities Act, 2016 has been
     of minority women; Padho Pardesh, a scheme          enacted by the Government aimed at securing
     of interest subsidy on educational loans for        and enhancing the rights and entitlements of
     overseas studies for the students belonging to      PwDs (it includes the provision of increasing the
     the minority communities; for skill development     reservation in government vacancies from 3 per
     and of the minorities, schemes like Seekho Aur      cent to 4 per cent).