Congress leader Gaurav Gogoi on Wednesday slammed Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma for allegedly misleading the people of Assam regarding the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) report.
"The Chief Minister first claimed that Assam had progressed from being an Aspirant category in 2018 to Performer category in 2020. However, the truth is all states have made some amount of progress. In fact, Assam's progress from 2019 to 2020 was of barely 2 points (55 to 57), making it the slowest overall progress among all states. In contrast, the highest growth of a state was 12 points, far from Assam's growth rate. Assam's overall rank in this recent survey also dropped from 23rd to 26th," Mr Gogoi said.
The Kaliabor MP said that in terms of health, Assam has the lowest score of 59 among all states. It also dropped by 3 ranks from 25th to 28th place. Percentage of adolescent aged 10-19 years who are anaemic is 36.9 per cent higher than India's score.
"States like Punjab, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Himachal have much better scores. Assam also has the highest maternal mortality rate among all states with a score of 215, almost double of India's score," Mr Gogoi added.
The MP alleged that the BJP government has continuously been misleading the people of Assam.
"Assam has ranked 24 out of 28 states and its score has actually dropped this year from 44 to 43. Assam's dropout rates in classes 9 and 10 is the second highest among all states. It also has one of the lowest pupil teacher ratios of 11 among all states and almost half of India's score of 21," the Congress leader stated.
Economically, Assam has a score lowest in the Northeast. Assam's rank dropped from 17 in 2019 to 22 in 2020. In fact, States like Arunachal Pradesh and Manipur, who were lower than Assam in 2019 have surpassed Assam in 2020.
"The Chief Minister also tried to justify Assam's poor performance because the data was based on NFHS (National Family Health Survey) 4 and not recent NFHS survey 5. The justification does not hold because there is not much significant difference between NFHS 4 and the Phase 1 factsheet of NFHS 5. For example, population (female) age 6 years and above who ever attended school in NFHS 4 was 75 and in NFHS 5 is 78," Mr Gogoi said.
"Assam ranked lowest, 28th for women empowerment in the category of gender parity and equality. Firstly, the indicator of gender parity is based on access to healthcare, education, nutrition, employment and asset ownership," he added.