The recently released annual cleanliness survey, ‘Swachh Survekshan 2023,’ has shed light on the state of cleanliness in urban areas across India. While Madhya Pradesh’s Indore clinched the title of the cleanest city for the seventh consecutive time, the findings highlighted a concerning trend in West Bengal. Howrah, a city in West Bengal, was declared the dirtiest city in India, with the ten dirtiest cities with a population over one lakh all belonging to the same state.
Howrah topped the list of the dirtiest cities, followed by Kalyani, Madhyagram, Krishnanagar, Asansol, Rishra, Bidhannagar, Kanchrapara, Kolkata, and Bhatpara. Surprisingly, except for Kolkata and Bhatpara, all the other eight cities from West Bengal scored below 1,000 in cleanliness. This revelation raises questions about the state’s sanitation practices and the urgent need for remedial measures.
In contrast to West Bengal’s struggles, Madhya Pradesh emerged as a beacon of cleanliness, with Indore securing the cleanest city title for the seventh consecutive year. Indore was closely followed by Surat (Gujarat), Navi Mumbai (Maharashtra), Visakhapatnam (Andhra Pradesh), and Bhopal (Madhya Pradesh). These cities exemplify effective sanitation practices and a commitment to cleanliness.
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The survey also identified Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, and Chhattisgarh as the states with the highest sanitation standards, earning them the distinction of being the cleanest states in India. On the flip side, Arunachal Pradesh, Mizoram, Rajasthan, and Nagaland found themselves rated as the least clean states. This disparity highlights the need for targeted efforts to improve sanitation infrastructure and awareness in states lagging behind.
The survey extended its evaluation to cantonment boards, with the Mhow Cantonment Board in Madhya Pradesh securing the top spot for cleanliness. In contrast, Nainital Cantonment found itself at the bottom of the rankings. The performance of cantonment boards underscores the importance of cleanliness in military areas and the need for consistent efforts to maintain high standards.
The Swachh Survekshan 2023 awards ceremony, led by President Droupadi Murmu, marked a significant milestone in India’s commitment to cleanliness. With the participation of 4,447 urban local bodies and over 12 crore citizen responses, this survey stands as the largest cleanliness survey globally. While applauding the successes, the findings underscore the pressing need for targeted interventions in regions struggling with cleanliness, ensuring a cleaner and healthier urban landscape for all.