The EoL index evaluates the performance its cities across four pillars — quality of life, economic ability, sustainability and citizen perception.(File photo)
The EoL index evaluates the performance its cities across four pillars — quality of life, economic ability, sustainability and citizen perception.(File photo)

Ease of Living Index: Economic might led Bengaluru to top rank

  • Bengaluru, India’s technology capital, is an economic powerhouse on account of the presence of some of the world’s largest corporations.
By Sharan Poovanna, Hindustan Times, Bengaluru
UPDATED ON MAR 05, 2021 04:11 PM IST

The economic might of India’s flourishing technology capital propelled Namma Bengaluru to the top spot in the centre’s Ease of Living (EoL) report 2020 with 66.70 points. The ranking was based on its performance across 14 categories (and 49 indicators). Pune came in second, according to the report released on Thursday.

Bengaluru, India’s technology capital, is an economic powerhouse on account of the presence of some of the world’s largest corporations. It is the country’s largest software exporter and also home to some of the biggest public and private sector companies that have helped create a thriving ecosystem, providing employment and growth.

The EoL index evaluates the performance of its cities across four pillars—the quality of life, economic ability, sustainability and citizen perception.

“With a score of 78.82, Bengaluru’s performance (economic ability) surpasses the rest (of the other urban centres) by a long distance and raises the average score for the pillar to 13.17. Bengaluru’s high score can be particularly ascribed to its performance in the category, Level of Economic Development, wherein it has achieved a score of 99.50 and raised the average category score to 18.03,” said the report, released on Thursday by Hardeep Singh Puri, India’s Union Minister for Housing & Urban Affairs, civil aviation and Commerce & Industry (MoS).

Bengaluru was adjudged the most livable among 111 cities in India in the government's Ease of Living Index (Ht Graphics)
Bengaluru was adjudged the most livable among 111 cities in India in the government's Ease of Living Index (Ht Graphics)


However, the residents of India’s IT capital have been cautious in validating the rankings as Bengaluru is placed 18th among large cities (and 42nd overall) in the citizens' perception survey (CPS) on what appears to be a reflection on the poor quality of infrastructure, sanitation, little or no waste management, unplanned expansion and an ineffective municipal administration among other issues that plague a city that enjoys a global reputation for its prowess in technology.

“Bengaluru has emerged as the most livable city in India in the Ease of Living Survey conducted by @MoHUA_India. The Bengaluru model of development of citizen-centric initiatives and delivery of services have ensured the top ranking of #Bengaluru,” Karnataka chief minister B.S.Yediyurappa posted on Twitter.

Bengaluru, classified and categorised among other urban centres with a population higher than a million people (49 of the 111 surveyed), has been ranked 12th in quality of life and 13th in sustainability, according to the report. The municipal administration or BBMP (Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike, the city’s civic body) in this case has been ranked 31st.

“There are 100 indicators in the case of municipal performance index. We will go through the ranking and score. Wherever we have scored badly, we will take measures to improve and in the next year our performance will be much better,” said N.Manjunath Prasad, the BBMP commissioner.

“To change citizens’ perceptions, we have to engage stakeholders in consultations and constant dialogues. Wherever the citizens feel that we require improvement, it is time to improve it to their satisfaction and we will work in that direction,” he added.

India has one of the highest urbanisation rates globally and Indian cities attract millions of white and blue-collar migrant workers from across the country and beyond, seeking better employment opportunities, access to healthcare and education among other requirements including a certain degree of aspirational value.

India’s urban population is estimated to become 40% of the country’s population by 2030 and 50% by 2050, according to the report.

“The rise in the concentration of urban population vastly outpaces the capacity of local city administration catering to the needs of the people,” the report added.

The rise in urban population has led to an increase in the level of economic development but further shrunk economic opportunities that amassed the poorest average score of 8.30 across categories. City resilience, that measures the implementation of disaster reduction strategies, amassed the highest average score of 91.59.

The better social and economic indicators of the southern states reflected in the overall rankings with Chennai, Coimbatore, Visakhapatnam, Madurai, Hyderabad and Vijayawada ranked 4, 7, 15, 22, 24 and 44 respectively.

Karnataka also has five cities--Davangere, Mangaluru, Tumakuru, Shivamogga and Belagavi--ranked 9, 20, 23, 26 and 47 respectively in the overall

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