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State of the States
India has 29 states and seven union territories that include Delhi and Puducherry. What kind of life have these 36 administrations given us? Piecing together information from various sources that are publicly available we present the state of the economy, health, education, infrastructure, crime and punishment and governance in each of these outposts.

First, let’s put a few perspectives in place. One, we have classified the states into three categories: ‘A’ is about states with a population of at least 5 per cent of India’s population.  ‘B’ represents states with a population of 2.5 per cent of India’s population. The rest of the pack make up for ‘C.’ 

There is a separate categorisation for Union Territories.  We have made a couple of adjustments. Delhi, which has a sizeable population, is placed under Category ‘C’ states, while Puducherry, whose population is negligible, stays under Union Territory.  Telangana has been left out since some parameters relating to it are not available. 

The deck now has A (8 states), B (6 states), C (15 including Delhi) and UT (6 excluding Delhi)

Let’s tell you how we have gone about with the analysis. We tracked 20 parameters and categorised them into six major categories. 

 

MEASURING HAPPINESS

‘Economic progress,’ leads to happiness. The five principal measures are per capita GDP, asset ownership, poverty, unemployment and inflation.  Let’s look at their importance in turn. 

1. Per capita GDP:   

The Gross Domestic Product (GDP) measures the earnings of a state during a year and is an indicator of economic performance. It’s similar to the annual earnings of a family. A better signpost of happiness is per-capita GDP, which is the ratio of the state GDP to state’s population. It’s an indicator of the standard of living as also the productivity of a state’s workforce.

2. Homeownership:   

Not just in India but the world over, home ownership is a matter of status and achievement. Research shows that home owning leads to better wealth, health, and happiness.  It is good for the economy. As buyers scale up, the multiplier effect works since furniture, home loans, and construction material industries benefit. 

3. Prosperity:

Prosperity is the measure of success in society.  Food, drinking water, sanitation facilities, healthcare and education represent some of the pre-requisites for a minimum standard of living. It depends on both income and access to services.  We have taken the percentage of people living below the poverty line and deducted it from 100 per cent to arrive at the index of prosperity. 

4. Inflation: 

If I could buy ten dosas with Rs 100 ten years ago but can buy only four now, it means there has been an inflation in the price of dosas. In the long run, the rise happens because of an increase in the money supply.  Reasonable inflation can be healthy. It is one marked by both increase in money supply and improvements in the economic growth of the society. Changes in the Consumer Price Index are a good measure of inflation. The state with the lower inflation index is ranked higher. 

5. Employment 

In economic speak, the employment rate is the share of the labour force, which are qualified and willing to work, that has jobs and incomes. When the economy is doing well, the employment rate should rise as it creates additional economic investments, which in turn create jobs and revenue.  The employment rate is the ratio of the employed population to the working age population. We picked the unemployment rate per 1000 and deducted it from 1000 to arrive at the employment rate.

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