Kerala topped the charts among states as NITI Aayog on Monday launched the second edition of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) India Index in New Delhi. The Index documents the progress made by India’s States and Union Territories towards implementing the 2030 SDG targets.
Kerala retained its rank as the top state with a score of 70. Chandigarh too maintained its top spot among the Union territories with a score of 70.
Among states, Himachal Pradesh took the second spot while Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Telangana shared the third spot on the table, respectively.
Uttar Pradesh has improved its overall score from 42 in 2018 to 55 in 2019, and is the highest gainer. India's largest state by population made the biggest improvement in affordable and clean energy, clean water and sanitation, and industry, innovation and infrastructure.
Odisha stands second in overall improvement, with an increase of 7 points, from 51 to 58. Sikkim is the third best state in overall improvement: from a score of 58 to that of 65, indicating an increase by 7 points.
Bihar is the worst performer on the SDG India index.
Amongst Union territories, Chandigarh topped the list, while Puducherry is ranked second. Dadra and Nagar Haveli has been ranked third among Union territories.
The newly-created Union territories of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh are ranked at the bottom in their category.
India's composite score improved from 57 in 2018 to 60 in 2019-20 with major success in water and sanitation, power and industry. However, nutrition and gender equality continue to be problem areas for India, requiring more focused approach from the government.
NITI Aayog also launched the Dashboard 2019-20. The SDG India Index and Dashboard track the progress of States and rank all States and Union Territories on 100 indicators drawn from Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation's National Indicator Framework, comprising 306 indicators.
It indicates where the country and its States and UTs currently are on SDG implementation. It also charts the distance to be travelled to reach the SDG targets.
The Index covers 16 out of 17 SDGs and a qualitative assessment on Goal 17.
This marks an improvement over the 2018 SDG Index, which covered only 13 goals.