Patterns, Processes of Reproduction, and Policy Imperatives for Poverty in Remote Rural Areas: A Case Study of Southern Orissa in India
Given the vast geographical area, ecological-cultural diversity, and deep-rooted social stratification, spatial inequality is one of the important features of poverty in India. Besides inter-regional variations, there also exist a large number of spatial poverty traps characterised by four major categories of regions, viz., remote, low potential or marginal, less favoured, and weakly integrated. In fact, there is often a significant overlap among these categories of spatial poverty traps. The multiple and mutually reinforcing disadvantages or deprivation faced by most of the spatial poverty traps has led to reproduction of poverty as manifested by the fact that incidence of poverty in these regions continue to remain significantly high in terms of absolute levels as well as comparative ranking. The state policies in India have a long history of addressing the issue of developing `backward areasâ€™, defined by using multiple categorizations. However, these policies, have achieved only limited success, as the central focus of the policies has been on `mainstreamingâ€™ these areas into the larger processes of economic development instead of addressing the very root cause of poverty and reproduction thereof.
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