Mass Poverty in Pakistan: Some Preliminary Findings

Author: S.M. Naseem
Publication Year : 1973

The disillusionment of many developing countries with past policies which paid exclusive attention to the rate of growth has, in recent years, led to a somewhat belated interest in the problems of unemployment, income distribution and mass poverty. Pakistan/perhaps, has the unique, if dubious, distinction of being one of the first developing countries both to adopt and, later, to reject growthmanship as a national creed.1 Although serious doubts about the assumptions and implications of the official strategy of economic growth in Pakistan began to be expressed in 1968, the issues were clouded by the political demand for the autonomy, and later the separation of the eastern wing of the country. At the recent Pakistan Economic Conference, held in February 1973, some of the basic issues of Pakistan’s development strategy were discussed hi detail in various papers [1], [7], [14], [25]. The focus of these papers was on income distribution and employment and their implications for the future growth strategy. The present author in his paper [14] at the Conference, presented some tentative estimates of mass poverty and unemployment in West Pakistan. The present paper is designed to give more systematic estimates of the extent of mass poverty in Pakistan.

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