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Poverty in Tribal Dominated Economy: Dimensions and Proximate Determinants

Ray, Jhilam and Sengupta, Atanu (2012): Poverty in Tribal Dominated Economy: Dimensions and Proximate Determinants.

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Abstract

Inequality in individual income, assets or occupational status among society work as a hindrance to realize objective of balanced economic development. Also with the modernisation of society and integration of economies the question of social fluidity is becoming essential aspect of development. Certainly the issue of disparity and its impact on individual present and future has a bearing on intergenerational mobility. Historically some groups belong to lower strata of society due to economic and or social discrimination leading to lower income and asset possession as well as capability formation. It is often found that backward social classes are excluded from the process of capability formation and income-earning opportunities due to various forms of discrimination. This exclusion and backwardness transcends the boundary of the current generation and spills over to successive generations as well. As a result Intergenerational Mobility in terms of both Education and Occupation is very low among backward classes, trapping them in multidimensional poverty that continues across generations. This paper focuses on one of the most backward region of West Bengal, the district of Purulia which is a resource poor district dominated by Scheduled Tribes. Similar in socio-economic and geographic profile to its contagious areas of Jharkhand rather than that of West Bengal, this district has witnessed unprecedented severity of poverty and occupational stagnancy. We have tried to link these two issues by examining the deprivation aspect with question of intergenerational mobility. We measure poverty in Purulia district at the block level composing indices like Modified Capability Poverty Measure and Human Poverty Index (HPI) to get the intra district scenario. Then the intergenerational mobility in education and occupation status have been taken into account to explain the present scenario of the district.

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