“Cleanliness is Godliness” is the mantra of Mahatma Gandhiji, Father of Nation. The Government of India has launched Swachh Bharat Abhiyan on 2/10/2014 with a vision to dedicate Clean India on 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi on 2/10/2019. Mahatma Gandhi Swachhata Mission is integrated with Swachh Bharat Abhiyan towards realizing this laudable vision. SBM is being implemented by the Ministry of Urban Development (M/o UD) and by the Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation (M/o DWS) for urban and rural areas respectively.

Mission Objectives:

  • Elimination of open defecation
  • Eradication of Manual Scavenging
  • Modern and Scientific Municipal Solid Waste Management
  • To effect behavioral change regarding healthy sanitation practices
  • Generate awareness about sanitation and its linkage with public health
  • Capacity Augmentation for ULB’s

Ministry of Urban Development on 15 February, 2016 released the SWACHH SURVEKSHAN Report 2016 that ranks 73 cities on cleanliness and other stated parameters that were covered for survey, as part of the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan. The purpose of the nationwide survey was to assess the progress made by various cities under the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan and rank cities on that basis of the parameter. The purpose of the report is also to introduce an element of competitiveness amongst cities to try and improve their rankings in coming times.

The survey was entrusted to the Quality Council of India (QCI) which submitted its report to the Government of India on schedule. The report ranks cities based on an ‘overall score’ earned on the basis of points earned as per ‘Independent Observer’ as well as ‘Citizen’s feedback’. This was done to achieve a balance between the Independent Observer’s study and what the local citizen’s feel.

The service level parameters of evaluation covered:

  • Planning: Strategy for Open Defecation Free Town (ODF) and Integrated Solid Waste Management (SWM)
  • Communication: Information, Education and Behaviour Change Communication (EBC) activity
  • Waste Management: Door to door collection, Sweeping, Collection & Transport
  • Sanitation: Public & Community Toilet Provision
  • Sanitation: Individual Household Latrines

 Mysore city in Karnataka has topped the Swachh Bharat Rankings of 476 cities in the country with three more from the State figuring in the top 10. West Bengal does well with 25 cities/towns from the State finding a place in the top 100 cities. 

39 cities from the Southern states are among the top 100 followed by 27 from the East, 15 from the West, 12 from the North and 7 from the North-Eastern States. 15 of the 27 capital cities surveyed figured among the top 100 performers while five were ranked beyond 300. Bengaluru leads the list of capitals at 7th rank while Patna came at the bottom at 429.

Among the bottom 100 cities, 74 are from the North, 21 from the East, 3 from the West and 2 from the South.

Top Ten Cleanest City in India:

Name of the City

Overall score







Delhi- NDMC










Pimpri Chinchwad


Greater Mumbai


The Swachh Bharat Mission – Urban aims to fulfil the objective of 100% Open Defecation Free status in all 4,041 Urban Local Bodies in the country by October 2019.

This will entail providing access to toilet facilities (i.e. construction of sanitary latrines – individual household toilets, community and public toilets). In parallel, it will also entail operation and maintenance of these facilities to maintain their functionality, along with behavior change initiatives through intensive participation of key stakeholders – self-help groups, students and youth, corporate organizations, to ensure that these sanitary facilities are used regularly.


While 5929 wards and 115 cities have already become ODF, 681 cities, 8000 wards, three states (Andhra Pradesh, Kerala and Gujarat) and one UT (Chandigarh) are poised to become ODF by March 2017. First ODF free city is Mysure, followed by Mangaluru and Mumbai.