Kerala has achieved the top position in the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) Index 2020-21 while Bihar has ranked the lowest, as per the evaluation report released by NITI Aayog on Thursday, 3 June.
The index, first launched in 2018 by NITI Aayog, has been documenting and ranking the progress made by states and Union territories towards achieving the Sustainable Development Goals.
This year's evaluation report has found that the country’s overall SDG score improved by 6 points – from 60 in 2019 to 66 in 2020-21.
This positive stride towards achieving the targets of sustainable development is largely driven by exemplary country-wide performance in two stipulated goals: Clean Water and Sanitation, and Affordable and Clean Energy.
The state with the highest SDG Index is Kerala, topping the index with a score of 75. The next place is shared by Himachal Pradesh and Tamil Nadu.
Andhra Pradesh, Goa, Karnataka, Uttarakhand, Sikkim, and Maharashtra also ranked well on the index.
Bihar, which performed the worst, has a score of 52. This is followed by Jharkhand and Assam, which have a score of 56 and 57 respectively.
The states which have made the maximum improvement in their scores from last year are Mizoram, Uttarakhand, and Haryana.
What is the SDG Index?
The SDG Index monitors the social, economic, and environmental progress of Indian states and Union territories.
Designed and developed by NITI Aayog, the preparation of the index followed extensive consultations with the primary stakeholders – the states and Union territories; the UN agencies led by United Nations in India; Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation (MoSPI), and the key Union ministries.
This year's evaluation marked the third annual edition of NITI Aayog's SDG India Index.
The report was launched by NITI Aayog Vice Chairperson Dr Rajiv Kumar.
“Our effort of monitoring SDGs through the SDG India Index & Dashboard continues to be widely noticed and applauded around the world. It remains a rare data-driven initiative to rank our States and Union Territories by computing a composite index on the SDGs. We are confident that it will remain a matter of aspiration and emulation and help propel monitoring efforts at the international level.”NITI Aayog Vice Chairperson Dr Rajiv Kumar
The SDG India Index 2020-21 had been developed in collaboration with the United Nations in India, and tracks progress of all states and UTs on 115 indicators that are aligned to MoSPI's National Indicator Framework (NIF).