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Sustainable Development Index

Date: 31 December 2019 Tags: Reports & Indices


NITI Aayog has released its latest SDG India Index 2019, which assesses each state and Union Territory’s achievement on 16 sustainable development goals (SDG).



The SDGs are a set of 17 broad-based global goals adopted by the United Nations General Assembly in 2015, and intended to be achieved by 2030. With one-sixth of the world’s population, India is key to the achievement of the goals.



  • Among the 16 SDGs, marine ecosystems is for coastal states only, and scores on this one were not counted in the composite total.

  • In the other SDGs, the best performers were Tamil Nadu for ‘no poverty’; Goa for ‘zero hunger’; Kerala for ‘good health’; Himachal Pradesh for ‘quality education’; Himachal again for ‘gender equality ‘; Andhra Pradesh for ‘clean water and sanitation’; Sikkim for ‘affordable and clean energy’; Telangana for ‘decent work & economic growth’; Gujarat for ‘industry, innovation and infrastructure; Telangana for ‘reduced inequalities’; Goa for ‘sustainable cities and communities’; Nagaland for ‘sustainable consumption and production; Karnataka for ‘climate action’; Manipur for ‘life and land’; and Andhra Pradesh and Gujarat for ‘peace, justice, strong institutions’.

  • Ending hunger and achieving gender equality are the areas where most states fall far short, with the all-India scores for these goals at 35 and 42 points respectively.

  • On the other hand, Niti Aayog has given India an overall score of 60 points, driven mostly by progress in clean energy and sanitation (88); peace, justice and strong institutions (72); and affordable and clean energy (70).

  • Kerala topped the index with a score of 70.  Himachal Pradesh took the second spot with a score of 69 while Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Telangana shared the third spot with each scoring 67.

  • There are eight states in the highest bracket, called frontrunners, with scores in the range 65-99. Behind Kerala, Himachal Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Telangana, the other states in this category are Karnataka (66), Sikkim (65) and Goa (65). Two UTs, Chandigarh and Puducherry, scored in this range.


  • Each of the 16 SDGs, ranging from good health to quality education, gender equality, and climate action, comprise several indicators, with the number of these varying from SDG to SDG. Scores are given for a state or UT on each SDG.

  • The composite score for each state or UT is computed by aggregating their performance across these goals, and then by taking the arithmetic mean of individual goal scores. A score of 100 implies that the state/ UT has achieved targets set for 2030.

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