Poverty in India is estimated on the basis of income or consumption level and if the income or consumption falls below a given minimum level, then the family is said to be below poverty line (BPL).
Poverty in India is assessed by the Task Force of NITI Aayog on the basis of data collected by the National Sample Survey Office.
In pre-independence India, Dadabhai Naoroji was the first to estimate poverty on the basis of food provided to prisoners while in prison, but this was partial.
Poverty in India is measured by the absolute criterion.
An alternative definition for poverty assessment was recognized by the Planning Commission, taking into account dietary needs. Poverty according to this concept. People living below the line consume less than 2400 calories per day in rural areas and less than 2100 calories in urban areas.
The first official attempt to determine poverty in India was done in 1962. In the 8th five year plan, the caloric yield of rural 2400 and urban 2100 was accepted. 49 in rural areas in 1973-74. Consumption expenditure has been fixed at Rs. 56 per person per person and in urban areas at Rs. Similar methodology was used in the 9th and 10th Five Year Plans also.
The Tendulkar Committee proposed the cost of living index for determining the poverty line, ie. per capita consumption expenditure.