Do Mumbai and Delhi represent India?

The recently released World Bank report placed India at 130 in the 2017 ranking of the Doing Business Survey on the basis of a survey from just two cities; Mumbai and Delhi. For a country as diverse as India which is growing and making its presence felt in the comity of nations, by taking just take two cities into consideration does injustice to a nation.

Now these two cities have done badly in the state ranking conducted by the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) and World Bank. What is ironical is even this survey was done in conjunction with the World Bank.

img_9432Telangana and Andhra Pradesh jointly topped the ‘Ease of doing business reforms ranking 2016-17 relegating Gujarat to the third spot. Gujarat was the top ranker the previous year.

The question is how can the World Bank decide to place India as low as 130 by taking Delhi and Mumbai and ignoring several states in the country that are upping the ante in welcoming investment and implementing the single window system with gusto.

Indian states are now making sincere attempts to woo investors and are serious. Sample this: In the previous year if seven states implemented more than 50 % of the reforms proposed, this year 17 implemented more than 50% of the 340 reforms listed by DIPP. Does this in itself not warranty a better ranking?

img_9431The pace at which states are implementing reforms can be gauged by the fact that last year not a single state implemented more than 75% of reforms but this year 16 states have done so.

The ranking has been done keeping in mind parameters such as single-window systems, tax reforms, construction permits, environment and labour reforms, inspection reforms, commercial disputes and paper-less courts.

In the DIPP’s state ranking, Maharashtra and Delhi have fared poorly, the former fell by two spots to 10th rank and the latter by four places to 19th rank. There is all the more reason for the World Bank to seriously take not of this anomaly.

The national implementation average stands at 48.93% several notches higher than last year’s average of 32% according to DIPP statement. There is a serious methodology issue and the World Bank needs to immediately sort this out.

In the past any tourist visiting India would make a trip to Delhi, Agra and Jaipur and return back. India has much more, likewise, though Delhi and Mumbai are hot spots for business, but exciting developments are happening in the length and breadth of the country and limiting a nation’s progress by just viewing two cities is sheer injustice to say the least. Is the World Bank listening?