Visakhapatnam has retained its rank of ninth position in the Swachh Survekshan 2021 rankings. First place yet again went to Indore, the reigning cleanest city in the country, for the fifth time in a row. The rankings were announced and the awards were presented by the President of India, Ramnath Kovind at the Swachh Survekshan Awards 2021 in New Delhi on Saturday morning. Last year too, Visakhapatnam had been ranked ninth in the Swachh Survekshan rankings, released by the Union Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs.
This year, 342 cities in the country are being assessed and given certificates with some star rating. While Indore has been deemed the cleanest city with more than 10 lakh population, the cleanest state award has gone to Chhattisgarh, winning this distinction for the third consecutive year. Surat grabbed the second spot while representing Andhra Pradesh at the top, Vijayawada was ranked third, climbing from fourth last year. Maharashtra dominated the rankings in the ‘under 1 lakh population’ category, with its towns Vita, Lonavala and Saswad occupying the first, second and third spots respectively. Varanasi won in the cleanest Ganga town category while the Ahmedabad Cantonment was adjudged the cleanest cantonment in the country.
After the highs of 2016 and 2017 when Visakhapatnam was ranked fifth and third in the Swachh Survekshan 2021 rankings respectively, the city has slipped since then, not ranking higher than seventh. However, it has increased its rating from 1 star in 2020 to 3 stars this year. This year, the Greater Visakhapatnam Municipal Corporation (GVMC) aimed to be within the top 5 of the rankings which didn’t happen. Hopefully, from next year, Visakhapatnam will start moving up again in the Swachh Survekshan rankings.