Ramakanta Biswas

Odisha has fared poorly on the Social Progress Index (SPI) and achieved the dubious distinction of 32nd rank among the states and union territories, as per the report of the Social Progress Index (SPI) for States and Districts of India.

The Social Progress Index (SPI) for States and Districts report made by the Institute for Competitiveness and Social Progress Imperative was released on Tuesday.  

The index assesses states and districts based on 12 components across three critical dimensions of social progress - Basic Human Needs, Foundations of well-being, and Opportunity. The index uses an extensive framework comprising 89 indicators at the state level and 49 at the district level.

Based on the SPI scores, states and districts have been ranked under six tiers of social progress. The tiers are Tier 1: Very High Social Progress; Tier 2: High Social Progress; Tier 3: Upper Middle Social Progress; Tier 4: Lower Middle Social Progress; Tier 5: Low Social Progress; and Tier 6: Very Low Social Progress.

Puducherry has the highest SPI score of 65.99 in the country, attributable to its remarkable performance across components like Personal Freedom and Choice, Shelter, and Water and Sanitation. Lakshadweep and Goa closely follow it with scores of 65.89 and 65.53, respectively. Jharkhand and Bihar scored the lowest, 43.95 and 44.47, respectively.

As per the index, Odisha scored 48.19 points and stood at 32nd in the rankings. The state figured in the Tier-V (Low Social Progress) category and remained at the fifth position from the bottom. 

Mizoram, Himachal Pradesh, Ladakh, and Goa have emerged as the best-performing states for the Foundations of Wellbeing. Within the dimension for the Access to Basic Knowledge component, Punjab has the highest component score of 62.92, while Delhi has topped the list for Access to Information and Communication with a score of 71.30. 

For Health and Wellness, Rajasthan has the highest component score of 73.74. For Environmental Quality, the top three states belong to the northeast region, namely, Mizoram, Nagaland, and Meghalaya.