The Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) has rubbished the poverty estimates published by the Planning Commission, saying it was unrealistic.

Union Heavy Industries Minister and senior NCP leader Praful Patel on Wednesday said to peg the per capita expenditure of Rs. 27.20 for the rural areas and Rs. 33.33 for the urban as the cut-off mark for excluding them from the poverty bracket was totally wrong.

The projections were unrealistic as they did not take into consideration the rigours of inflation and the high cost of living, he observed.

Asked if anyone could survive on Rs. 27.20, Mr. Patel said though the country had made progress, the Planning Commission’s ceiling on poverty was far from ground realities. It should take the cost of living into account and then determine afresh the poverty ceiling.

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