Does the meaning change if percentages are used instead of numbers and vice versa?  According to the Planning Commission of India, 27.5% of the population was living below the poverty line in 2004–2005. This would suggest that the number of people living in poverty has decreased by nearly half since 1977-1978 when the percentage was 51.3% of the population.  However, going by population number, the actual decrease is less than 10 million people.