South, N-E States top poverty-busters league

V Rishi Kumar Hyderabad | Updated on May 01, 2019 Published on May 01, 2019

Industrial States like Gujarat and Maharashtra lag

It is a pecking order with a difference which challenges conventional wisdom and perceptions about the development of States.

In what may come as a surprise to many, the north-eastern States of Mizoram, Tripura and Meghalaya, along with the southern States of Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and Kerala, and Uttarakhand, are among the front-runners in poverty eradication.

Sikkim, Goa, Jammu & Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Nagaland, Odisha, Rajasthan, West Bengal, Telangana, Punjab and Assam are among the ‘performers’. Significantly, States such as Gujarat and Maharashtra, which rank high in industrialisation, along with Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Bihar, Manipur, Jharkhand, Chandigarh and Delhi, are ranked as ‘aspirants’.

NITI Aayog has developed the SDG (Sustainable Development Goals) India Index to measure progress, trigger action at the State and Union Territory level and fuel advocacy. This covers 13 out of the 17 SDGs in the current phase. While the SDGs were released in December, the disclosures relating to poverty make for an interesting pattern.

The 13 SDGs are: No Poverty, Zero Hunger, Good Health and Well-being, Quality Education, Gender Equality, Clean Water and Sanitation, Affordable and Clean Energy, Decent Work and Economic Growth, Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure, Reduced Inequality, Sustainable Cities and Communities, Responsible Consumption and Production, and Climate Action.

The Index was computed using 62 priority indicators.



Composite Index

In the Composite Index, Kerala and Himachal Pradesh rank at the top with Chandigarh. Kerala has been ranked high due to its efforts to reduce hunger, achieving gender equality and quality education. Himachal, on the other hand, got its place for providing clean water and sanitation, and for reducing inequalities and preserving the mountain ecosystem.

In providing clean water and sanitation, Gujarat ranks first, joined by the UTs of Chandigarh, Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Lakhshadweep.

SDG 7 — of access to affordable and clean energy — has inter linkage and the order changes within the States. Preliminary estimates suggest that India will require at least $2.5 trillion at 2014-15 prices for meeting the climate change actions from now to the year 2030. Clearly, funding will be one of the key elements to implement SDGs.

The strange case of AP

Even as the NDA government at the Centre and the TDP government at the State haggle over Special Category Status for Andhra Pradesh, the State is doing well on several parameters.

After a recent SDG meet, Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu tweeted about AP’s performance citing NITI Aayog findings.

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Published on May 01, 2019
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