July 2018 News
At 21 Rank, J&K Among Lowest Governance Index States22 July 2018
Srinagar: Jammu and Kashmir is placed at the bottom among states with the lowest governance index in the country. According to Public Affairs Index (PAI) 2018 released by the think tank Public Affairs Centre (PAC) on Sunday, J&K is ranked at 21st position with overall PAI index of 0.414. J&K is placed among the lowest governance index states like Madhya Pradesh, Jharkhand and Bihar who are also ranked among the lowest on the PAI, indicating higher social and economic inequalities in the states. The governance index report reflects governance index before the period of governor's rule in J&K. Founded in 1994 by renowned Indian economist and scholar, late Samuel Paul, the think tank works to mobilise a demand for better governance in the country. The think tank has undertaken the study across all the Indian states considering them across 10 themes such as essential infrastructure, support to human development, social protection, women and children as well as law and order. Tamil Nadu, Telangana, Karnataka and Gujarat followed Kerala among the top five states delivering good governance, according to the report. Ironically, Jammu and Kashmir, having less than 2 crore population, is also placed at 8th position among small states in governance index. Among smaller states (with population less than two crore), Himachal Pradesh topped the list, followed by Goa, Mizoram, Sikkim and Tripura which figured among the top five states with good governance. Nagaland, Manipur, Meghalaya and Delhi are ranked at the bottom of the index among small states along with J&K. The states were divided into two categories, large and small, on the basis of their population. States with more than two crore population were considered large. A total of 30 focus subjects and 100 indicators were measured to derive the PAI, relying solely upon government data. The only silver lining in the governance index report is the good performance of J&K among states having least rise in crime rate and having highest number of colleges per lakh population. The PAC in its statement has stated that it was not keen to access private data sources that may be interpreted as 'biased'. This year's PAI also included a separate index on the children of India, giving a measure of how child-friendly is each state. Kerala, Himachal Pradesh and Mizoram topped the index for states that provide better living conditions for all children. Kerala stands as the best governed state in the country. Released annually since 2016, the index examines governance performance in the states through a data-based framework, ranking them on social and economic development they are able to provide.