Minister of (State) Housing and Urban Affairs

India’s steady economic growth is reflected in the rapid expansion of her cities. India, today is one of the fastest growing large economies in the world. Our exponential growth is driven by urban centres where growing proportion of the population gravitates to in search of economic oppurtunities. With the current urbanisation rate, India is expected to have 50% of the country’s population residing in cities within the next 30 years.

The rising urbanisation promises more significant innovation and accelerates economic growth. It also puts tremendous pressure on the available resources, which can be detrimental to the quality of life in cities. The Central Government is committed to planned urbanisation with an aim of providing a high quality of life for the people. The COVID 19 pandemic has reminded us that people are our most valuable resources. Our cities cannot be prosperous if people do not have access to housing, water, and other basic amenities.

Under the leadership of the Hon’ble Prime Minister, Shri. Narendra Modi the Central Government has unleashed the most comprehensive agenda for planned urbanisation. The flagship missions such as Smart Cities Mission, Atal Mission for Rejuvenation and Urban Transformation (AMRUT), Swachh Bharat Mission (Urban) and Pradhan Mantri Was Yojna (Urban) will transform the urban landscape.

I am pleased to launch the Ease of Living Index 2020. With its data – driven approach to evaluate the performance of 111 cities, the index will be valuable tool for city governments to understand the gaps in implementing the above programmes and tailor their strategies suitably. I urge governmental and non governmental stakeholders involved in urban development to make the best use of this index and strengthen the progress of Indian cities towards higher development trajectories.

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