Bandi Sayeedan

When it comes to creating illusions, it doesn’t matter where one lives; the same gimmicks are deployed to conceal poverty. In 2011, the government statistics in Pakistan identified 12% of the population below the poverty line. This number was similar to living under US$1.25 per day threshold, which put 12% per cent of the population below the poverty line. Imagine if the government had picked US$2 per day as the threshold. This would have condemned 50% of Pakistanis to poverty. The children you see are deemed poor and are severely malnourished, unschooled, and stunted. They don’t have basic level of education, access to healthcare, or even access to a toilets or clean water amongst other things. Above all, poverty should be defined as having the ability to live your life with some level of dignity and respect, coupled with the opportunity basic human needs.