Chhattisgarh ranks as the best performing state in most of the key fiscal parameters, according to a Reserve Bank of India (RBI) study, released on Wednesday. According to the study, Chhattisgarh has done reasonably well in spending its money in developmental sector, one of the key parameters to judge States overall performance.
As per RBI study, published in its annual number, ‘State Finances - A study of budgets of 2013-14’ Chhattisgarh's development expenditure as per cent of Gross State Domestic Product (GSDP) is highest in the country. In Chhattisgarh, development expenditure is 20.7 per cent of GSDP, whereas average of all states put together is 11.4 per cent. On this parameter, Bihar is second (16.8), Madhya Pradesh and Goa third (15.7) and Jharkhand is fourth (14.7). Interestingly, till last financial year (2012-13) Bihars development expenditure was highest in the country.
In respect of social sector expenditure, that includes education, health, SC/ST development, women and child development, Chhattisgarh holds the first position. Social sector expenditure, in Chhattisgarh as per cent of GSDP is 14 per cent whereas Bihar (11.3) is second, Madhya Pradesh (9.7) and Uttar Pradesh (9.7) are third and Jharkhand (9.2) is fourth. The study is done analysing the budgets of the States rather than surveying the ground level situation in the States. In a different study, National Sample Survey Office (NSSO) has indicated that Chhattisgarh is the poorest State of the country where nearly 40% people live below the poverty line.
“State Government's emphasis on development and social sector expenditure during the last decade have resulted in significant improvements and sharper decline in Infant Mortality Rate, Maternal Mortality Ratio and malnourishment as compared to the all-India average,” a state government release following up on RBI study has said. In debt sustainability, boosting growth in state revenue or acquisition of fixed assets (capital outlay) to GSDP, Chhattisgarh has done well, the study said.