Bengaluru: The Public Affairs Centre (PAC) released its index report on the state governance where Kerala ranked as best in state governance, followed by Tamil Nadu. Karnataka was placed fourth. Madhya Pradesh, Jharkhand, and Bihar were among the lowest states on the index.
Kerala has topped the index, among larger states, for three consecutive years since 2016, reported Bengaluru-based PAC at an event on Saturday, while releasing the index. This report is released by PAC every year since 2016.
The index studies governance and performance in a state through a data-based framework. Criterions for the index include the performance of state on social and economic development based on variants like infrastructure, support to human development, social protection, women and children, and law and order of the state.   
The states are divided on the basis of their population into two - large and small-scale cities. More than two crore population was examined under large states.  Around 30 focus subjects and 100 indications are analysed to establish the index. Only government data is used for analysis. Use of private data can be interpreted as biased, thus preference is given to data provided by the governments.
A separate index was made this year for children. This measured how equipped states are striving towards children’s development. Shantha Sinha, the former chairperson of the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights, stated that children growing up in poverty cannot be blamed; rather it is the state’s responsibility that opportunities for a better living are provided for.
Kerala topped the index in providing better opportunities for child development. Himachal Pradesh and Mizoram were also at the top in the same criterion.
Tamil Nadu, Telangana, Karnataka, and Gujarat were, respectively the top-listed states that followed Kerala. Madhya Pradesh, Jharkhand, and Bihar were ranked the lowest on the index. These states showed a higher social and economic inequality.
Under the data for small-scale states, Goa, Mizoram, Sikkim, and Tripura were among the top five states for good governance. Nagaland, Manipur, and Meghalaya were at the bottom of this list.
K Kasturirangan, former chairman of Indian Space Research Organisation and the current chairman of PAC, said that developmental challenges need to be assessed and addressed adequately while considering the fact that India has the highest population dividend currently.  CK Mathew, a senior fellow at PAC, said that the index provides a “multi-dimensional and comprehensive matrix to capture the complexities of governing” in the country.
The PAC was founded by Indian economist and scholar, late Samuel Paul, to stimulate better governance in the country.