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SPI: Odisha among 7 low-progress States

| | BHUBANESWAR | in Bhubaneswar

Despite posting a 10-point rise in over a decade of 2005- 2016, Odisha figured among the seven low-social progress States in the country. Odisha was grouped along with States like Tripura, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Jharkhand and Assam. Among the seven low-social progress States, Odisha scored less than Tripura and Rajasthan but remained ahead of UP, Jharkhand, Assam and Bihar.

Such an indication about Odisha’s social development over a decade has come to the fore in a recently-released Social Progress Index (SPI)-2017 by the Institute of Competitiveness, the Indian unit of the Institute for Strategy and Competitiveness at the Harvard Business School. The SPI-2017 matrix was even presented to the Niti Aayog.

“The SPI is modelled to measure and equip the Governments to make social progress more integral to national performance and also to make the SPI a tool to measure accountability in governance and politics,” the report observed.

For measuring the SPI of a State, the developed matrix took dimensions like basic human needs, foundations of wellbeing and opportunity. These three dimensions then were further sub divided into four components each like nutrition and basic medical care, water and sanitation, shelter and personal safety under the dimension basic human needs; access to basic knowledge, information and communication, health and wellness, environment quality under dimension foundations of wellbeing; personal rights, personal freedom and choice, tolerance and inclusion, access to advanced education under dimension opportunity.

Among the three dimensions, Odisha has the lowest score of 42.8 in opportunity whereas in basic human needs the State scored around 55 and around 51 in foundations of wellbeing. The score in opportunity has been very poor as Odisha failed to the 50-value benchmark.

Significantly, the poor scoring in dimension ‘opportunity’ was attributed to abysmal scorings in components like access to advanced education, inclusion and personal rights. Odisha has been 8th underperformer in component of personal right and in top-10 underperformer in component inclusion. The poor values under each component have been due to low disposal of court cases and poor enrolment of STs and low financial inclusion, respectively. However, in component ‘personal freedom and choice’, Odisha scored a high value of around 76.

Odisha was also tagged in top-10 underperformer States in the dimension of nutrition and basic medical care. But it emerged as the top underperformer State in the component of access to information and communication by scoring a mere 21 value. The reason: Odisha scored only single-digit values in access of people to TV, news and internet. Also, in component ‘shelter’, Odisha was 4th poorest State owing to low scoring in people living in pucca houses. Moreover, in insurance penetration also, Odisha scored very poorly.

An analysis of the data available shows that Odisha lagged in almost all parameters compared to the national averages. Be it Gross Enrolment Rate (GER) in secondary education or GER of SCs, phone subscription, literacy rate, households with electricity, judicial disposal, rural sanitation coverage, etc. Also, Odisha on account of higher values than the national averages in indicators like IMR, respiratory infections, underweight children and violent crimes fared poorer in the SPI.

 
 
 
 
 

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