ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Cash Transfers as the Silver Bullet for Poverty Reduction: A Sceptical Note

The current perception that cash transfers can replace public provision of basic goods and services and become a catch-all solution for poverty reduction is false. Where cash transfers have helped to reduce poverty, they have added to public provision, not replaced it. For crucial items like food, direct provision protects poor consumers from rising prices and is part of a broader strategy to ensure domestic supply. Problems like targeting errors and diversion from deserving recipients are likely to be even more pronounced with cash transfers and cannot be eliminated through technological fixes like the UID.

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