UNDP Report Lauds India’s Aspirational Districts Programme

The Independent appraisal report ‘Aspirational Districts Programme: An Appraisal’ released by United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) India, has appreciated India’s Aspirational Districts Programme (ADP) as ‘a very successful model of local area development’ and stated that it can be a best practice for other parts of the world, where regional disparities in development status exist.

  • The UNDP has appreciated ADP after analysing its 49 Indicators across 5 key sectors of ADP – health and nutrition; education; agriculture and water resources; basic infrastructure; and skill development and financial inclusion.
  • The report is based on quantitative analysis of publicly available data, interviews with stakeholders (such as district magistrates, central prabhari officers and others).
  • The report was handed over by UNDP India Resident Representative Shoko Noda to NITI Aayog Vice Chairman Dr Rajiv Kumar & CEO Amitabh Kant.

Comparison between AD districts & Non-ADs

i.The report has compared Aspirational Districts (AD) & Non-ADs.  In this the ADs have performed better than non-ADs.

  • UNDP recommends ‘Malaria Mukt Bastar Abhiyaan’ in Bijapur (Karnataka) and Dantewada (Karnataka), which reduced malaria incidences by 71% and 54%, respectively, as one of the ‘best practices’ found in Aspirational Districts.
  • In AD’s, around 1580 more accounts were opened per 1 lakh population under the Pradhan Mantri Jeevan Jyoti Bima Yojana (PMJJBY), Pradhan Mantri Jan-Dhan Yojana (PMJDY).

ii.Due to efforts made under ADP, districts in remote locations and those affected by Left Wing Extremism have experienced significant growth.

iii.The report also provides several recommendations for further improvement of the initiative.

Factors behind Success

  • Monitoring of real-time data, convergence across government programmes and schemes and receiving the benefits of ADP by substantial margins have been the major factors behind success of the initiative.
  • The delta rankings provided by ADP’s Champions of Change dashboard infused competitiveness and pushed several low performing districts to improve their rankings by implementing the scheme successfully.

Aspirational Districts Programme

The ‘Transformation of Aspirational Districts’ was launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in 2018 to raise the living standards of its citizens, ensure inclusive growth for all ‘Sabka Saath Sabka Vikas’, and improve India’s rankings under Human Development Index.

i.Aspirational Districts are those districts which are affected by poor socio-economic indicators. A total of 117 such Aspirational districts have been identified by NITI Aayog.

Recent Related News:

December 16, 2020, According to the “Human Development Report 2020 – The next frontier:Human Development and the Anthropocene” released by UNDP –  India was ranked 131 in the list of 189 countries, Norway topped the list.

About  United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)

Administrator – Achim Steiner
Headquarters – New York, USA





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