Three cities of Maharashtra – Pune, Navi Mumbai and Greater Mumbai – are the most livable places in the country, according to the ranking of 111 cities on the Ease of Living Index released by the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs on Monday. While four cities of Maharashtra made it to the top 10 list (Thane is placed at 6th spot), national capital New Delhi was ranked a lowly 65 on the index. Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka, which have a number of big cities, found no representation in the top 10.
Interestingly, the capital cities of poll-bound Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh made it to the top 10 list. Bhopal was ranked 10th, while Raipur was placed at the 7th spot. Another city of Madhya Pradesh, Indore, was ranked 8th in the list, which was released along with an Ease of Living Index dashboard by Union Housing and Urban Affairs Minister Hardeep Singh Puri.
Among the Union Territories, Chandigarh was the only city that made it to the top 10 list and was placed 5th. Two cities of Andhra Pradesh – Tirupati and Vijayawada – were ranked 4th and 9th respectively.
The Ease of Living Index is an initiative of the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs to help cities assess their liveability vis-a-vis global and national benchmarks and encourage cities to move towards an ‘outcome-based’ approach to urban planning and management. Cities were ranked on four factors – institutions and governance, social infrastructure (education/health), economic factors and physical infrastructure.
On governance, Navi Mumbai, Tirupati, and Karim Nagar were the top three cities, while Chandigarh, Ajmer, and Kota aced in the economic factors category. On the social infrastructure category, Tirupati topped the rankings followed by Tiruchirappalli and Navi Mumbai. Greater Mumbai, Pune Thane secured the top three spot in the physical infrastructure category.
The Ease of Living assessment standards are linked to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and will provide a strong impetus to India’s effort for systematic tracking progress of SDGs in the urban areas.