Swachh Survekshan 2020 UPSC


The Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs has recently released the results of Swachh Survekshan 2020. The Swachh Survekshan Survey is conducted every year since 2016, which inspire the cities to adopt best practices through which cleanliness in the respective cities got maintained at utmost level. In this article, key highlights are given for UPSC and State Services Examinations.

Swachh Survekshan 2020

In the Swachh Survekshan Survey, 2020 Indore in Madhya Pradesh retained its position as the cleanest city in India for the fourth consecutive year.

About Swachh Survekshan Survey

  • It is an annual ranking exercise taken up by the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs (MoHUA). It got started in 2016.
  • Its aim is to assess urban areas of the country on their levels of cleanliness and active implementation of Swachhta mission initiatives in a timely and innovative manner.
  • In 2020, the fifth edition of the survey was conducted in which a total of 1.9 crore citizens across 4,242 cities, 62 cantonment boards and 92 Ganga towns of the country participated.
  • From 2019 onwards the Swachh Survekshan programme was organised in a complete digital format.


  • This survey is instrumental in fostering a spirit of healthy competition among towns and cities to improve their service delivery to citizens and towards creating cleaner cities and bring behaviour change in the citizen towards cleaning.
  • It has managed to mobilise people, resources and authorities in an effort to prove that their city, of all cities in India, is the cleanest and that sustainable practices, both by citizens and ULBs, are being encouraged and promulgated.
  • This cleanliness campaign is the backbone of all other schemes like- affordable housing scheme, the smart cities scheme etc.
  • This mission is inspired by the vision of cleanliness shared by Father of Nation- ‘Mahatma Gandhi’.


  • The major aim of this survey is to encourage citizen participation on large scale
  • It also wants to create awareness amongst all sections of society about the importance of working together to make towns and cities better places to reside in.
  • This programme is meant to monitor the performance of Swachh Bharat Abhiyan.
  • Its major objective is to generate large-scale participation in Swachh Bharat Abhiyan.
  • Also, inculcating a spirit of healthy competition among cities towards becoming India’s cleanest cities.

Findings of the Swachh Survekshan Ranking

Top Performers

  • Second position was bagged by Surat (Gujarat) and Navi Mumbai (Maharashtra) ranked third.
  • Varanasi has been declared as the ‘best Ganga town’.
  • Chhattisgarh has been declared as the ‘Cleanest State’, followed by Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh, in the category of states with more than 100 urban local bodies (ULBs).
  • In the category of less than 100 ULBs, Jharkhand was adjudged as the ‘Cleanest State’, followed by Haryana, Uttarakhand, Sikkim, Assam and Himachal Pradesh.
  • Varanasi got the award of ‘Best Ganga Town’ in the country, followed by Kanpur, Munger, Prayagraj and Haridwar.
  • Noida became the 25th cleanest city with a population between 1 and 10 lakh in India and is the first city in Uttar Pradesh.
  • In the ‘cleanest capital’ city category, New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC) got the first rank.
  • In the ‘Citizen Feedback’ category
    • Greater Hyderabad has been declared the ‘Best Mega City’,
    • Chandigarh bagged the award of ‘Best Union Territory’,
    • Gandhinagar became the ‘Best State Capital in Innovation and Best Practices’.
  • Ambikapur (Chhattisgarh) got the title of cleanest city in the category of 1-10 lakh population, followed by Mysore in Karnataka and New Delhi Municipal area.
  • In the cleanest Cantonment Boards category, Jalandhar Cantonment Board had been ranked first, followed by the Delhi Cantonment Board and Meerut Cantonment Board.

Worst Performers

  • In the category of cities with less than 10 lakh population, Gaya (Bihar) is the worst followed by Buxar (Bihar) and Abohar (Punjab).
  • West Bengal’s capital city Kolkata stood at the lowest position among 49 major cities.


  • According to a report of the Ministry of Environment, In India 56 million kilograms of garbage is generated every year, and it is estimated that it will reach 1.45 lakh crores kilograms by 2030.
  • By the year 2050, there will be 7 times more garbage than today, thats total weight will be around 4 lakh crores kilograms.
  • Some major states like West Bengal is not participating in the survey.

Way Forward

  • Since 2016, some cities have been lagging behind in the charts of Swachh Survekshan, which clearly shows their less participation in Swachh Bharat Abhiyan.
  • By the year 2015, Indore stood at 149th position in terms of cleanliness. But within a span of two years, the city administration made substantial changes in the course of action, making it the cleanest city in the country.
  • To make the India cleanest country following steps should be taken:
    • The NGOs and the Municipal Corporations should constantly engage in communication with the citizens to instill the habit of cleanliness.
    • A command center should be up in the city to track the garbage collected in the city besides installing GPS trackers on all the garbage collecting vehicles.
    • The administration should also remove large public dustbins, and instead garbage should be collected from house-to-house.
    • Moreover, the city can be cleaned during the night, to keep the city nice and tidy for citizens going to work in the day.
    • The administration should take the support of children to create awareness about cleanliness and make them brand ambassadors of cleanliness.
  • Recently, the ministry has launched an integrated MIS portal which brings the numerous digital initiatives on a single platform, which will ensure a unified and hassle-free experience for States and cities and leading the way towards the creation of not just a Swachh but a truly digital India.

Other Important UPSC Notes