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         Abstract
 
Inclusion and Exclusion in India, Pakistan and Bangladesh: The Role of Religion
Rajeev Bhargava
This paper analyses UNDP’s human development and related indices for usefulness in measuring development at the country level. By considering the example of India’s National Human Development Report (NHDR) (2002), it shows how innovations in concepts and methodology can make the globally used UNDP approach more useful in measuring human attainments and provide a more effective tool in guiding policy and strategic framework for implementing a human development approach at the country level. The emphasis is not so much on the numbers at the sub-national level that the various indices generate in the said Report. It is rather on highlighting the relevance of using contextualized measures—their conceptualization and methodology for estimation—in undertaking country level analysis. A major objective of this paper, as well as the Report it draws on, is to bring about a certain consensus on the use of the human development approach in India in general, and the framework for identifying appropriate indicators and building composite human development indices at the State level, in particular. poverty is identified as a composite of extreme forms of income poverty, human development poverty and social exclusion, the eradication of which may be regarded as a human rights entitlement in each society. The paper, by invoking the human rights discourse within an international programme for poverty eradication, aims at elevating the status of development policy, identified as capable of removing poverty, to a plan of action in terms of defined obligations and identification of agents who should be responsible for carrying out these duties, which can be implemented by different nations, domestically and through international cooperation. If a State is unwilling to adopt and implement that programme, it can be considered as violating human rights.


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