Bihar government sends memo to NITI Aayog; Objects in the classification of Bihar in MPI
New Delhi: On Friday, the government of Bihar delivered a memorandum to NITI Aayog raising a “strong objection” to its ranking of the state in the Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI) report. NITI Aayog released the report in the last week of November in which it ranked all states on different metrics. Bihar ranked the state as the poorest in the report.
Bihar Energy, Planning and Development Minister Bijendra Kumar Yadav said the state’s assessment by NITI Aayog is “unacceptable”, as reported by IANS.
In the nine-page note, he said the report was based on data from 2015, which is “a totally unacceptable method that a leading institution has chosen to assess Bihar.”
“The state has gradually grown in all sectors every year, but NITI Aayog used old metrics to assess Bihar. NITI Aayog’s review process was flawed. Therefore, we have strong objections to this, ”he added.
Yadav added that this is the second time the state has written to NITI Aayog. Earlier, when the report was released by NITI Aayog, BJP chief Prem Ranjan Patel called the report a “bundle of lies.”
Bihar leaders who condemn the report argue that how could a backward state like Bihar be evaluated to the same standards as developed states like the Punjab.
“Bihar is a backward state. It needs special status to reach the national development average. Bihar completes all parameters and special status is required. Justice with Bihar would only be done after obtaining special status, ”Yadav added.
According to the NITI Aayog report, 52% of Bihar’s population live below the poverty line. And Bihar ranks last in terms of per capita income, education, maternal health, cooking fuel, education and school attendance. Bihar also has the highest number of malnourished children.