Madhya Pradesh’s Indore has been adjudged India’s cleanest city for the fifth consecutive year by Swachh Survekshan 2021, the central government’s annual cleanliness survey to promote sanitation in urban centres under the Swachh Bharat Mission. The findings were released on 20 November 2021 by President Ram Nath Kovind. Surat and Vijaywada were ranked as the second and third cleanest cities, respectively, with a population over 1 million.

About the Survey

  1. Every year, cities and towns across India are awarded the title of “Swachh Cities” on the basis of their cleanliness and sanitation drives as a part of the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan (Clean India Mission) that was launched in 2014.
  2. Varanasi was ranked the cleanest under the ‘Ganga town’ category.
  3. Among smaller cities with population between 1-10 lakh, New Delhi ranked first followed by Ambikapur in Chhattisgarh and Tirupati in Andhra Pradesh.
  4. The survey’s findings were based on assessments by field officers and citizens’ feedback on garbage disposal, open defecation-free ratings, functionality and maintenance of community toilets and safe management of faecal sludge from toilets and ensuring that no untreated sludge is discharged into open drains or water bodies.

Flashback

  1. The Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, the nodal agency for the Swachh Bharat Mission, conducted its first survey in 2016, ranking 73 cities (urban local bodies).
  2. To expand the coverage, the ministry conducted its second survey the following year, ranking 434 cities.
  3. In Swachh Survekshan 2018, the scale increased to 4,203 cities.
  4. In the 2019 Swachh Survekshan 4,237 cities were covered and 4,320 were covered in 2021.