Is there a role for caste and religion in food security policy? A look at rural India
This paper finds that factors such as caste and religion influence food security at the regional level. Thus defining affirmative action within food security programs may be necessary as the current practice of designing food security programs around the poverty line is shown to deliver limited results. In this regard, another lack of consideration is region-specific analysis within the rural areas which shows varied influence, thereby cautioning against a ‘one size fits all’ general policy of the central government. Evidence also shows that socio-economic factors and social assistance programs had different impacts on calorie gap depending on one's nutritional status. This nonlinear relationship has been neglected in most studies on food security and thus raises doubt on past assessment and policy implications.
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