New Delhi: If you are able to feed yourselves with handful of rice and pulses, government considers you to be fit and healthy. At a time when one piece of potato costs one rupee, the government is of the view that 44 paise are enough to have fruits.

The revelations are surprising and unrealistic but these are the new criteria set by the Planning Commission to define the poor in the country.

In the affidavit submitted before the Supreme Court, the Planning Commission has said that those spending in excess of Rs 32 and Rs 26 a day in urban areas and villages, respectively, would no longer be included in Below Poverty Line category.

The affidavit, submitted on Tuesday, reveals that the new definitions are based on the findings of the Suresh Tendulkar Committee. As per the Committee report, if a person living in a metro city spends Rs 3,890 a month, he will not be considered as poor.

Planning Commission suggests that spending Rs 5.50 on cereals per day is good enough to keep people healthy.

Similarly a daily spend of Rs 1.02 on pulses, Rs 2.33 on milk and Rs 1.50 on edible oil should be enough to provide adequate nutrition and such people would be categorised among those above the poverty line.

At a time when poor people have to pay Rs 200 a month to the police for sleeping along the

roadside, the Government pegs Rs 49.10 a month as house rent in urban areas.

Despite high cost of stationery items, Government data suggests that Rs 29.60 a month is good enough for expenditure on them.

JPN/Bureau