The Urban Development Ministry has prepared a framework for ‘City Liveability Index’ for all Indian cities based on 77 parameters under 15 categories. These include level of air pollution, availability of public transport, open space, hospital beds per lakh population, student-teacher ratio, response time to health emergencies and security of citizens, besides addressing public grievances. Centre will share these parameters with state governments in its bid to push competition among cities as it is being done for Swachhta or sanitation ranking. The bottom line is “None” across India be it city, village, town. We are not simply living the way we should. It is chaos, every house holder have their own regulations when it comes to build a house. No municipal regulations or enforcement. And above all too many people in too little land and people colliding with each other like electrons. This is the first time that liveability ranking of Indian cities is being done. Until now only global ranking of mega cities had been published. We expect cities to take about six to eight months to submit all details. We will have a system in place for verification and audit by a third party. Rankings will be out after these assessments, said a ministry official. The parameters relate directly to the quality of life. The basic benchmarking for health and public space has been worked out. For example, the ideal response time in case of health emergencies is 8-10 minutes; there should be 2.5 beds per 1,000 population and 24.5 doctors for every 10,000 people. For open space index, the ideal per capita availability of green spaces is kept at 10 sq metres and average distance to travel for accessing public spaces is 400 metres. By the end of this year, you will get to know how ‘liveable’ your city is and its rank among all cities. For cities like Jammu and Kashmir it sounds some fairy tale and these indexes are nowhere to be seen. So one can imagine the quality of life they offer. And even if introduced will the government of the State be able to emulate them in real life for the
people? Is the big question here.