Expressing concern over India’s ranking on social indicators, NITI Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant on Tuesday blamed the eastern Indian states for keeping the country backward.
The NITI Aayog chief also said that though India has improved its ranking on “ease of doing business”, the country remains backward on human development index (HDI).
“Eastern part of India, particularly states like Bihar, UP, Chhattisgarh, MP and Rajasthan, is keeping India backward especially on social indicators,” Amitabh Kant was quoted as saying by news agency ANI.
"While we've improved on ease of doing business, we've remained backward on human development index," he added.
Amitabh Kant made the remarks while addressing the first Khan Abdul Gaffar Khan Memorial Lecture at Jamia Millia Islamia University on Tuesday.
The NITI Aayog chief further pointed out that India is still at 131st position in the Human Development Index (HDI) out of 188 countries of the world.
Speaking on the 'Challenges of Transforming India' topic, Amitabh Kant said the southern and western part of India were doing reasonably well and growing rapidly, adding the country needs to focus on social indicators if the human development index (HDI) has to be improved.
Emphasising upon the importance of sustainable growth, Kant said, "Education and health are critical and these are areas in which India is lagging behind. Our learning outcomes are poor - a class 5 student is not able to do class 2 substraction. Class 5 student is not able to read his mother tongue. Infant mortality rates are very high. Unless we improve on these aspects, it will be difficult to grow in a consistent way."
He also pitched for women's participation in decision making process.
(With agency inputs)