Hivos International

Poverty alleviation legislations & intersectual exclusions

The need to institutionalise equality and eliminate poverty has led India to take a lead in evolving poverty alleviation programmes and introducing radical legislations. In this paper, we analyse the latest poverty alleviation legislation, viz., the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act, 2005, (NREGA) and the Unorganised Workers Social Security Act, 2008 (UWSSA).

While poverty alleviation programmes were earlier primarily designed to address rural poverty and provide guaranteed employment to the poor, it is for the first time that the Government of India (GOI) has enacted legislation to provide social security to the poor in the entire country, not only in rural areas but also in urban areas with access to BPL cards. This has received critical attention from both supporters and opponents. The supporters say that the NREGA gives rights to the poor for the first time. These rights help slow down distress sale of land and restrict migration, free bonded labourers from extra-legal relations of patronage and make women empowered. The opponents of this Act argue that it promotes corruption due to political and administrative inefficiencies, yielding more costs rather than benefits.

Overview working paper series “The Long Road to Social Security”:

#1: The Political economy of unfree labour in South Asia
#2: The Challenge of universal coverage for the working poor in India 
#3: Affluence, Vulnerability and the provision of social security
#4: Contingent Social security schemes for unorganised workers in India
#5: Unto the last? An introduction
#6: Poverty Alleviation Legislations and Intersectional exlusions (this paper)
#7: Making Labour laws work
#8: Political economy of social security for the informal workers in India
#9: Implementing NREGA
#10: Health insurance initiative for the poor
#11: National rural employment guarantee scheme in Andra Pradesh
#12: The business of health care and the challenge of health security
#13: Functioning of contingent social security schemes in Kerala
#14: Beneficiary as agency role of women’s agency and the panchayat in implementing NREGA
#15: The practise of poor relief in rural South Gujarat
#16: Monitoring the implementation of social security for the urban poor
#17: Social security schemes in tribal areas of Gujarat
#18: Structural legacy, state’s in-efficacy and weakening social securities in Orissa 
#19: Implementation of social security schemes in Odisha
#20: Functioning of NREGS in Punjab
#21: Social security schemes in Punjab

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لا يمكن معرفة أسباب الثورة التي اندلعت في الخامس عشر من آذار/ مارس  2011 دون قراءة خصائص البنية السياسية والاقتصادية والاجتماعية لسوريا منذ  بداية تشكل سوريا بشكلها الحديث في ظل الانتداب الفرنسي وحتى الآن.

وكون  العامل الاقتصادي يلعب الدور الأبرز في طبيعة العاملين السياسي والاجتماعي  فإن دراسته تغدو واجباً لفهم أعمق للمسألة السورية الآن، بدءاً من  الانتداب الفرنسي الذي قطع الدورة الطبيعية للاقتصاد السوري المتشكل عبر  قرون طويلة بفعل سايكس بيكو التي فصلت المدن (حلب ودمشق...) عن مجالها  الاقتصادي والتجاري (بيروت، حيفا، الموصل، اسكندورن)، لتبدأ سوريا في تكوين  اقتصاد جديد ضمن دائرتها السياسية الجديدة، بحيث تشكلت أول دورة اقتصادية  جديدة في عام 1952 في ظل اقتصاد حرّ لم يلبث أن ينتهي تحت وطأة الوحدة مع  مصر 1958 لتبدأ سوريا طريقاً متعرجاً نحو الاشتراكية والتأميم والإصلاح  الزراعي لن يأخذ شكله الجذري إلا مع وصول البعث إلى السلطة عام 1963  وليكتمل عام 1970 بوصول حافظ الأسد، لنكون أمام محاولة تكوين بنية اقتصادية  سورية تنوس بين الاشتراكية والتحرير الاقتصادي الجزئي المترافق مع سلطوية  سياسية ستتجذر يوماً بعد يوم لتتحول إلى استبداد عضوض يجعل من الاقتصاد  مجرد أداة في يد السلطة لتعيش سوريا أزمة اقتصادية مزمنة منذ ثمانيات القرن  الماضي، إذ تمّت معالجتها بالمسكّنات وفق سياسة الإطفائي إلى أن انفجر  المرجل في آذار/ مارس 2011.