Reading the report “Consumption data contradict high poverty estimates” (May 6) evoked deep anger. Poverty is not a dice to be played and gambled with by statisticians. When a man who honestly struggles to earn his bread is uncertain of where his next meal will come from, he is the one who should be reckoned to be the one who is utterly poor. No one with self-esteem fakes poverty. It is time our planners and politicians stopped fooling people by playing with digits and definitions. Let the haves sacrifice a bit for the less privileged. Ground realities should support our planners’ fantasies and they should step out often and see things for themselves. Rural India will tell us where we stand in terms of poverty and consumption. There is abject poverty in the country.

Sivamani Vasudevan,

Chennai

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