State Human Development Reports for Indian States
The Andhra Pradesh State Human Development Report of 2007 studies the state’s development trajectory in light of the shift towards more participatory institutions, innovative poverty alleviation programmes, spectacular demographic transition and pursuit of state-level economic reforms. Along with the human development indices for the districts of Andhra Pradesh, this Report presents a history of social movements and an overview of the economic and social developments in the state, covering employment, agriculture, health, education, women’s empowerment, exclusion and environment. The Report also discusses the importance of good governance for sustainable human development and dwells on democratic decentralization and participation.
The Arunachal State Human Development Report 2005 provides a description of the history of the state and its initiation in the development process. Opportunities foreseen by the state include the development potential in the hydroelectric power sector, farming, ecotourism and small scale industries while challenges include the state’s isolation from the mainstream and its relatively delayed initiation into the modernization process. In addition to providing significant data related to education, health and income status of the state’s population, the Report discusses the impact of gender inequality and other forms of deprivation and inequality on development. The development recommendations suggested in the Report focus on infrastructure development and biodiversity conservation as these are seen to be the key to sustainable development in the state.
The Assam State Human Development Report of 2003 presents an overview of the progress made by the state on human development indicators since Independence. With special focus on income and employment, health, education and the status of women, this Report brings out a series of sector-specific recommendations. Attention is drawn to inequalities, especially in terms of the lack of access to those living in backward regions to the means of development. Decentralized and participatory approaches that involve women and youth are flagged as key to encouraging inclusive growth in the state.
The Chhattisgarh State Human Development Report of 2005 introduces the state profile with rich information from the district reports prepared in the state. More than 19,000 Jan Rapats (district and village level reports) were written and ratified by villages. The state Report brings together these Reports and the recommendations made in the village in order to bring out people’s voices in giving direction to policy and programmes. While income, education and health are discussed at length, this Report goes on to describe the social and traditional institutions in Chhattisgarh, social relationships and the challenges that must be dealt with in order to bring in a more equitable society. Lack of information and public awareness, low levels of participation in governance and lack of coordination are sighted amongst the challenges to be overcome through more effective gram sabhas, streamlining the concerns of marginalized women and tribals, better institutional coordination, and establishing complementary roles for the panchayats and the government.
The Delhi Human Development Report of 2006 discusses the human development status of the city, with focus on several domains such as poverty, livelihoods, health, education and infrastructure. In addition to highlighting inequities, this Report brings in an innovative element of people’s perception of the city-state which has been recorded as ‘mixed’ overall. While improved access to health, education, employment and improved road conditions are the main positive attributes noted by residents, negative attributes include water shortages, power outages, collapse of public health provisioning, poor garbage disposal and sanitation. The Report also provides an overview of the governance challenges that beset this city-state, the national capital of the country, suggesting that an institutional solution to overlapping functions and jurisdictions of different government departments is of utmost importance. The Bhagidari scheme’s contribution towards improving governance through the collaboration of the Government of Delhi and its residents has been described. Factors considered critical to progress include better planning of land use, augmenting urban infrastructure especially by tackling the water and power crises, addressing safety concerns especially for women, strengthening public vigilance and partnership.
The Gujarat Human Development Report of 2004 focuses on a broad human development framework providing an overarching assessment of the development situation in the state. This Report attempts to evaluate the long term sustainability of the development paradigm being pursued by Gujarat. The current development situation in Gujarat is analysed in the context of previous development Reports for the state. Considerable economic success in the region is contrasted with slowing development and regional disparity. By looking at the development approach holistically and highlighting some successes in Gujarat, this Report aims to show how the state needs to continuously re-orient and adjust its development strategies to ensure sustained progress. The Report serves to highlight areas where further action is required as to how development efforts can be improved.
The Himachal Pradesh Human Development Report of 2002 is the first Human Development Report for the state. The Report focuses on poverty reduction, governance, sustainable livelihoods, and issues of HIV/AIDS. The Report outlines factors contributing to previous successes, particularly in the areas of health, education, and infrastructure, as well as persistent development challenges. Issues of health, education, income, and natural resources are specified in different chapters. Challenges of inequality pertaining to gender cut across all issues and are also dealt with in specific detail. Himachal Pradesh has made considerable progress since its recognition as a state in 1971, but the state recognizes that major development concerns persist. Poverty, environment, and gender remain among the primary development concerns for Himachal Pradesh. This Report serves to emphasize the future direction of development in the context of the state’s successes.
The 2005 Human Development Report for Karnataka provides an objective evaluation of the development situation for the state. It analyzes the outcomes of state initiatives in areas such as education, nutrition, healthcare, sanitation, drinking water and employment. The Report also aims to explore ways in which services can be improved and delivered more efficiently and with more accountability. The Report acknowledges that state spending is imperative to human development, but acknowledges that spending alone cannot be equated with development. It provides a unique focus on vulnerable groups such as scheduled tribes, scheduled castes, and women and children. Clear analysis and recommendations allow the Report to serve both as a record of existing development and tool for future initiatives.
Kerala’s 2005 Human Development Report acknowledges the high level of Human Development in the state and outlays social justice and equality as the agenda for future development. Despite significant success in development, gender inequality is a continuing challenge for the state. Criticisms and cautions that Kerala would not be able to sustain its progress and levels of human development have generally proven to be unfounded, however, the Report recognizes that there remains a need to address critical issues, such as eliminating poverty and ensuring the quality of education. The Report highlights achieving true gender equality, social and job security and improving governance as key objectives and stresses that there must be attention to sustaining current levels of progress as well as increasing development. This Report serves to illustrate the ways in which Kerala has enjoyed success and can serve as an example, without ignoring challenges to be overcome.
The 2007 Human Development Report for Madhya Pradesh views human development as both a means and an end for progress. The core of this Report emphasizes the need for improvements in economic infrastructure in order to foster inclusive development. Although Human Development is based on the notion that economic indicators are not the only measures of progress, economic infrastructure is necessary in order to facilitate progress in other areas such as health, education, sanitation, livelihoods etc. The Report looks at issues such as physical connectivity, energy, communications and financial infrastructure, and takes into consideration urbanization and migration. The role of economic and basic infrastructure in human development is undeniable, and the Report analyzes this role in existing human development success, and potential improvements.