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Gujarat tops Niti's Water Management Index, Jharkhand ranked lowest

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 

has topped the Aayog's composite water management index (CWMI), while tribal state was adjuded as the worst performer.

is followed by Madhya Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, and on the index.

In the northeastern and states, has been adjudged as the top state in 2016-17 followed by Himachal Pradesh, and

Aayog has ranked all states through first of its kind index on the composite water management, comprising 9 broad sectors with 28 different indicators covering various aspects of ground water, restoration of water bodies, irrigation, farm practices, drinking water, policy and governance.

The reporting states were divided into two special groups 'North Eastern and states' and 'Other States' - to account for the different hydrological conditions across these groups.

According to the report, titled 'Composite Water Management Index' released by for today, Jharkhand, Haryana, and are worst performing states in water management.

"In terms of incremental change in index (over 2015-16 level), holds number one position in general states and ranks at first position amongst North Eastern and states," the report said.

The Aayog proposes to publish these ranks on an annual basis in future.

While releasing the report, Gadkari said that water management is a big problem and "the states which have done well, have also performed better on agriculture front".

"To deal with the problem of air pollution and water management in Delhi, I am going to call a meeting with the of Delhi," he added.

The report also pointed out that is suffering from the worst water crisis in its history and millions of lives and livelihoods are under threat.

"Currently, 600 million Indians face high to extreme water stress and about two lakh people die every year due to inadequate access to safe water," it said, adding that the crisis is only going to get worse.

The report predicted that by 2030, the country's water demand is projected to be twice the available supply, implying severe for hundreds of millions of people.

According to the report, 52 per cent of India's agricultural area remains dependent on rainfall so the future expansion of irrigation needs to be focused on last-mile efficiency.

Noting that water index scores vary widely across states, it said most states have achieved a score below 50 per cent and could significantly improve their practices.

In pursuit of cooperative and competitive federalism, Aayog has been laying emphasis on developing indicators on various social sectors.

In February 2018, the Aayog had released a report on 'Healthy States, Progressive India' which covered the ranking of states/ UTs on various health parameters.

As a step further in direction and keeping in view the criticality of water for life, has prepared a report on composite water management index (CWMI).

According to an official statement, the CWMI is an to assess and improve the performance of states/ Union Territories in efficient management of

This has been done through a first of its kind water data collection exercise in partnership with Ministry of Water Resources, and all the states/ Union Territories, it added.

It also said the index will provide useful information for the states and also for the concerned Central ministries /departments, enabling them to formulate and implement suitable strategies for better management of

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Thu, June 14 2018. 19:15 IST