City Finance Rankings-2022: A recognition of Indian cities
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City Finance Rankings-2022: A recognition of Indian cities

‘City Finance Rankings, 2022’ would create a conducive environment for developing a robust municipal finance ecosystem for promoting financially healthy, transparent and sustainable cities

Post by MOHAMMAD HANIEF on Friday, December 30, 2022

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The ‘City Finance Rankings, 2022’ aim to evaluate, recognize and reward India’s cities (Urban Local Bodies or ULBs) on the basis of the quality of their current financial health and improvement over time in financial performance. The rankings aim to motivate city/state officials and decision makers, to implement municipal finance reforms. The participating ULBs will be evaluated on 15 indicators across three key municipal finance assessment parameters, namely: (i) Resource Mobilization, (ii) Expenditure Performance and (iii) Fiscal Governance. The cities will be ranked at the national level on the basis of their scores under any one of the following four population categories: (i) Above 4 million (ii) Between 1-4 million (iii) 100K to 1 million (iv) Less than 100,000. The top 3 cities in each population category will be recognized and rewarded at the national level as well as within each state/state cluster. The participating ULBs shall be invited to submit the required data/documents (including audited accounts, annual budgets, and self-reported performance metrics) through the online facility created on


City Finance Rankings are an effort to analyze and help the ULBs in identifying areas in their financial performance where they can make further improvements, to be able to deliver quality infrastructure and services to its citizens. The rankings will serve as a constant motivation for city/state officials to continue to implement municipal finance reforms. At a state and national-level, the rankings will highlight the outcomes achieved by municipalities and provide critical insights to key policy makers into the state of finances of urban local bodies. ULBs can benefit immensely by participating in the fiscal rankings as they will be able to self-evaluate their own performance vis-à-vis other cities, which can help them in self-improvement in future. All 4500+ cities / urban local bodies (ULBs) across all states/UTs would be encouraged to participate in the City Finance Rankings 2022.


‘City Finance Rankings, 2022’ would create a conducive environment for developing a robust municipal finance ecosystem for promoting financially healthy, transparent and sustainable cities. The ‘City Beauty Competition’ aims to encourage and recognize the transformational efforts made by cities and wards in India to create beautiful, innovative and inclusive public spaces. Wards and public places of cities would be judged against the five broad pillars (i) accessibility (ii) amenities (iii) activities (iv) aesthetics and (v) ecology. The City Beauty Competition would felicitate most beautiful wards and beautiful public places at the city level. While selected wards would be felicitated at the city and State levels, at the City level, most beautiful public places in cities viz. Waterfronts, Green spaces, tourist/heritage spaces and market/commercial places would be awarded first at the State and then shortlisted for award at the National level. It is hoped that healthy competition amongst wards and cities would encourage urban local bodies to improve their basic infrastructure, and also make the urban spaces beautiful, sustainable and inclusive.







Entries by wards and cities would be evaluated by an Independent Jury that may comprise experts from different fields like urban planning, design, engineering, culture experts, environmentalists and others. Competing wards and cities would submit their entries on the city beauty portal which would be designed by the Ministry’s knowledge partners - Administrative Staff College of India. Entrants would need to establish that their ward/public place meets the requirement along a set of indicators. Entries would be judged by the Jury. To facilitate the jury, a third party independent assessment would also be carried out. The decision of the jury on winning entries would be final. Participation in the City Beauty Competition is voluntary. However, all wards and cities are encouraged to participate, as this would generate healthy competition amongst them, while also inculcating a sense of community ownership & pride. This initiative of MoHUA will encourage wards and cities to come forward to showcase their initiatives and interventions towards creating functionally beautiful public spaces, while also preserving their rich cultural heritage.


Hardeep S. Puri, Union Minister of Housing & Urban Affairs and Petroleum & Natural Gas was speaking during an event on December 28, 2022 where two key initiatives of Ministry- ‘City Finance Rankings, 2022’ and ‘City Beauty Competition’- were launched said that the ‘City Finance Rankings 2022’ aims to evaluate, recognize and reward ULBs on the basis of their strength across three financial parameters viz. resource mobilization, expenditure performance and fiscal governance systems. The union housing minister further says that in May, 2014, when Prime Minister Narendra Modi assumed the office, he decided to view the Urbanisation. He embraced urbanisation as a challenge and made it win. Flagship schemes such as Swachh Bharat Mission (SBM) where the project of the government ended up being a Jan Andolan, Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (PMAY) and SBM 2.0 have been launched. There is a significant increase in amount of waste processing and management since 2014.


India has embarked on most ambitious plan of urban rejuvenation undertaken anywhere across in the world, he said and added that the idea behind the initiatives which were launched came from the prime minister when he met the chief secretaries of all the states in June this year and he outlined a vision of a pan - India ranking of the cities to foster a healthy competition among the municipal bodies in the matter of finances during this conference. Growing realization among local bodies that if you have healthy finances, if your procedures are transparent then the land value goes up and that is the beauty of this venture which is being launched, he said. According to the housing union minister, ‘The City Beauty Competition initiative’ has been launched to encourage and recognize the transformational efforts made by the cities and wards in India towards creating beautiful, innovative and inclusive public spaces.


(The author is a regular columnist and can be mailed at

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