This paper evaluates the Samurdhi programme as a national poverty reduction policy in Sri Lanka. The objective of this study is to find out whether the Samurdhi programme has achieved its intended objectives, what benefits and changes that the beneficiaries actually have received and to discover any success or drawbacks of the programme. Quasi-Experimental type design was used for the evaluation of the programme. The study reveals that even the income level,consumption level and the living standard of the beneficiary families have increased, though the cases are of limited in number. Majority of them still depend on the Samurdhi benefits and remain poor. It is also observed that the programme has not achieved its intended objectives. However, the theory behind the programme could be considered as a good, multiple approach,in which attempts have been made to get the poor involved into a participative mechanism with a component of community development. Nevertheless, it is bad in practice due to various drawbacks revealed by the study.
Keywords: Poverty, Samurdhi Programme, Policy Evaluation.
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Professor,Department of Public Administration,
University of Sri Jayewardenepura, Sri Lanka