NITI Aayog releases SDG India Index 2018: These are the states that are leading the ranks

Himachal Pradesh, Kerala, and Tamil Nadu have emerged as top performing states in NITI Aayog’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) India index 2018, as per a report released on Friday. Assam, Bihar, and Uttar Pradesh are among the worst performing states.

“Kerala’s top rank is attributed to its superior performance in providing good health, reducing hunger, achieving gender equality, and providing quality education.

Himachal Pradesh ranks high on providing clean water and sanitation, in reducing inequalities and preserving mountain ecosystem,” the document titled ‘SDG India Index Baseline Report 2018’ said, as per a PTI report.

Among the union territories, Chandigarh topped because of its exemplary performance in providing clean water and sanitation to people.

“The aim of the index is to instill competition among States to improve their performance across social indices as the States’ progress will determine India’s progress towards achieving the set goals by 2030,” NITI Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant said, as per a report in the Hindu. Through the index, states will be monitored on a real-time basis.

What is the SDG India Index?

The NITI Aayog has developed the SDG India index, which is a comprehensive index to measure progress of states and union territories through a single measurable index. The first baseline report for 2018 was prepared with the support of United Nations in India.

The index took into account 13 out of 17 goals specified by United Nations as SDGs. The index left out four goals due to lack of data at the state level.

Under the index, states can be monitored on real-time basis across 62 of the 306 national indicators that have been outlined by the United Nations. The United Nations-sponsored SDG has 17 goals, 169 targets, and 306 national indicators.

The importance of SDGs

“It is widely acknowledged that the world cannot achieve the SDGs without India achieving them. The Government’s flagship programmes such as Swachh Bharat Mission, Ujjwala, Gram Jyoti Yojana, and others are directed towards addressing these key national priorities, which are inextricably aligned with SDG targets,” NITI Aayog’s vice-chairman Rajiv Kumar, said, BusinessLine reported.

Kumar said that the government think tank will track the performance of the states, using 62 parameters associated with SDGs.

The states would be ranked on the basis of their performance on each of these SDGs. Some of the prominent SDGs are No Poverty, Zero Hunger, Quality Education, Gender Equality, Clean Water and Sanitation, Good Health, and Well-being.

The SDG Index Score for Sustainable Development Goals 2030 ranges between 42 and 69 for states and between 57 and 68 for union territories.

“The idea is to create competition among different states so that they work towards improving their performance on each of these scores and bettering their standing,” Kumar said.

Elton Gomes is a staff writer at Qrius

Climate ChangeHimachal PradeshKeralaNITI AayogSDGSustainable developmentTamil Nadu