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Friday, September 24, 2021

Strategic approach for Bharat’s overall development

As per the report of the Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation (released on 7 January 2020), the state per capita income of Goa is highest in the country at Rs. 467,998, followed by Delhi (Rs. 365,529) and Sikkim, whereas Bihar has the lowest NSDP per capita (INR at Current prices) Rs. 43,822 in FY 2018-19.

While Goa, Delhi, Sikkim, Chandigarh and Puducherry are the five richest states, Bihar, UP, Manipur, Jharkhand and Assam are the top 5 poorest states in terms of NSDP Per Capita which is below Rs.80,000 per annum. 

Uttar Pradesh is the most populous state in Bharat with estimated population of 23.79 crores in 2019, accounting for 17.35% of the total country population. Bihar is the second largest state by population with close to 12.5 crore people living here. Three states (UP, Bihar and Maharashtra) have population more than 10 crore. 

Almost half of the country’s population lives in the five highest populous states, namely, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Maharashtra, West Bengal and Madhya Pradesh. Ten most populated states of India contribute 74% of Bharat’s population. 

Population of the biggest state Uttar Pradesh is more than the population of Pakistan, the fifth most populous country in the world. Population of 2nd ranked Bihar and 3rd ranked Maharashtra are almost equal to Japan (11th most populous country). Bihar has the highest population growth rate during 2011-2019 of 19.89% followed by Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan. 


Unemployment Rate (%)
States Sep 2020
Andhra Pradesh 6.4
Assam 1.2
Bihar 11.9
Chhattisgarh 2.0
Delhi 12.5
Goa 15.4
Gujarat 3.4
Haryana 19.7
Himachal Pradesh 12.0
Jammu & Kashmir 16.2
Jharkhand 8.2
Karnataka 2.4
Kerala 5.9
Madhya Pradesh 3.9
Maharashtra 4.5
Meghalaya 4.3
Odisha 2.1
Puducherry 10.9
Punjab 9.6
Rajasthan 15.3
Sikkim 5.7
Tamil Nadu 5.0
Telangana 3.3
Tripura 17.4
Uttar Pradesh 4.2
Uttarakhand 22.3
West Bengal 9.3
(Monthly time series)
Unemployment Rate
28 Oct 2020*
India 7.1%
Urban 7.3%
Rural 7.1%
*30 day moving average


As per the above data, Uttarakhand, Tripura, Jammu and Kashmir, Goa and Rajasthan are the top five states with highest percentage of unemployment in the country. However, in terms of the actual number of unemployed people, states like Bihar, UP, Jharkhand, Odisha, and  few other states have larger share.

This is also supported by a survey on the blue-collar workforce by HRtech startup BetterPlace which says most of the country’s migrant workers hail from Uttar Pradesh, Assam, Odisha, Bihar, AP (the then undivided AP) , West Bengal and Jharkhand and some of the other northern and north-eastern states. Around 5-7 million of the estimated 120 million blue-collar workers moving in search of jobs from villages to tier I and tier II cities which indicates that the unemployment problem is acute in villages.

Literacy Rate

Bharat’s overall literacy rate is 77.7%. Literacy rate in the following six states is lesser than the overall country’s literacy rate. 

Andhra Pradesh  66.4%
Rajasthan 69.7%
Bihar  70.9%
Telangana  72.8%
Uttar Pradesh 73.0%
Madhya Pradesh 73.7%

Agricultural households average monthly incomes:

The income of agricultural households in the country is estimated by the National Sample Survey Office (NSSO) through the ‘Situation Assessment Survey’.

According to this survey conducted during NSS 70th round during 2013, agricultural households in 22 states have a monthly average income of Rs. 10,000 whereas the national average was Rs. 6,426. Income for this purpose includes salary/ wages, net receipts from cultivation, net receipts from farming of animals and net receipts from the non-farm business.

Agricultural household monthly average income in some states:

Haryana  Rs. 14,434
Odisha  Rs. 4,976
Utter Pradesh  Rs. 4,923
Jharkhand  Rs. 4,721
Uttarkhand  Rs. 4,701
West Bengal  Rs. 3,980
Bihar  Rs. 3,558

Agricultural households in Bihar, West Bengal, Uttarakhand, Jharkhand, Uttar Pradesh and Odisha have an average monthly income of less than Rs. 5,000, whereas Haryana has the highest average monthly income of Rs. 14,434 according to the data provided by the Government, in Rajya Sabha.

A report by the National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD), a government agency, (All India Rural Financial Inclusion Survey, i.e., NAFIS) shows that average agriculture household income was a mere Rs. 8,931 per month in 2016-17. The report says apart from a paltry income, farmers are facing rising indebtedness, lesser financial inclusion, and absence of insurance facility.

In four years (i.e., 2013-2017) the income of a farm household has increased by just Rs. 2,505/ month. While cultivation is still a major source of income (35 per cent), followed by daily wage labourer (34 per cent), livestock rearing contributes only 8 per cent of their income.


State  Low Per capita High Population  More out bound

migrant workers

Low literacy Low agri. household

average monthly 

West Bengal
Rajasthan √ *

(*Rajasthan has high percentage of unemployed population though not much of out bound migrant workers compared to the other four states mentioned above). 

It is a proven fact that greater level of literacy leads better employment as well as improving the per capita incomes which in turn also results in effective control of population growth.

Studies have revealed that supplementing the farm income with non- farm income and providing direct market access will significantly enhance the agri-household incomes. Therefore, the five states viz., UP, Bihar, Jharkhand, West Bengal and Rajasthan need to focus on improving the literacy, level of education and  enhancing the farmers’ incomes by providing better avenues for non -farm income and direct market access.

These simple strategies will go a long way in not only improving the economy of these five states but more importantly enable the country at the macro level to effectively control the population growth, improve the literacy, enhance the per capita income and improve the agri-household average monthly incomes since these five states are the culprits that are pulling down the country‘s overall performance in these areas. 

Let us hope that these state governments and the centre will work in this direction with collaborative efforts in the days to come which is the need of the hour. 

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Dr. B.N.V. Parthasarathi
Ex- Senior Banker, Financial and Management Consultant and Visiting faculty at premier B Schools and Universities. Areas of Specialization & Teaching interests - Banking, Finance, Entrepreneurship, Economics, Global Business & Behavioural Sciences. Qualification- M.Com., M.B.A., A.I.I.B.F., PhD. Experience- 25 years of banking and 14 years of teaching, research and consulting. 100 plus national and international publications on various topics like- banking, global trade, economy, public finance, public policy and spirituality. One book in English “In Search of Eternal Truth”, two books in Telugu and 20 short stories and 27 articles published in Telugu. Email id: [email protected]


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