In the grand tapestry of India’s economic landscape, Uttar Pradesh (UP) emerges as a significant thread, weaving a story of growth, development, and transformation. This populous state, often likened to Brazil in terms of its sheer population, is carving its niche in the new India that is on the cusp of greatness. This article explores the myriad facets that contribute to UP’s ascent as a pivotal player in the country’s economic landscape, touching upon its GDP, infrastructure development, innovation, tourism, and more.
The PRASHAD Scheme and Spiritual Tourism Boom:
The Central Government’s PRASHAD (Pilgrimage Rejuvenation and Spiritual Heritage Augmentation Drive) scheme, in collaboration with states, has played a pivotal role in the surge of spiritual tourism. The completion of the Ram Mandir in Ayodhya further amplifies the state’s spiritual appeal. The Uttar Pradesh government’s proactive initiatives to promote tourism, coupled with the spiritual rejuvenation brought about by the Ram Mandir, are poised to generate substantial revenue. It is estimated that the tourism boom could contribute up to Rs 25,000 crore in additional tax revenue annually, starting from FY25.
Uttar Pradesh Economic Landscape:
Uttar Pradesh is not just a demographic giant but a significant contributor to India’s Gross Value Added (GVA). Accounting for over 10% of India’s GVA, UP has seen a notable increase in the services sector, reaching 11.7% in FY23. With a strategic focus on infrastructure and investment, the state is positioning itself for substantial economic growth.
As India aims to scale its economy to $5 trillion by FY28, UP is expected to play a crucial role, possibly surpassing Norway’s GDP. The state has demonstrated commendable performance in exports, witnessing a CAGR of 7.1% between FY2013-23, outpacing the national average. Additionally, UP has been a significant contributor to wealth creation in capital markets, attracting new investors and witnessing an increase in the Assets Under Management (AUM) of Mutual Funds.
Social Indicators and Governance:
Beyond economic indicators, Uttar Pradesh has shown resilience in social parameters. Despite being the most populous state, UP has performed better than the national average in crimes against women per lakh population. The state’s conviction rate in cases against women surpasses the national average, reflecting effective governance and law enforcement.
Post-pandemic, UP has seen positive trends in youth unemployment and increased Labor Force Participation Rate (LFPR) for females aged 15-29. The implementation of Digital Didi schemes has contributed to enhanced financial literacy among women, fostering financial independence.
Leadership in Financial Inclusion:
Uttar Pradesh has emerged as a leader in financial inclusion, holding the highest share in PMJDY accounts and PM-SvaNIDHI loans. The state has witnessed a significant increase in both PMJDY and PMMY accounts since FY19, indicating the success of financialization initiatives at scale and the formalization of informal sectors.
Infrastructure Development and Innovations:
The state has made substantial progress in infrastructure, doubling its installed power generation capacity between FY2014-22. UP’s performance in both deposits accretion and credit deliverance by Scheduled Commercial Banks (SCBs) has outpaced the national average.
In the realm of innovation, UP has increased its stake, with a 7.2% share in patents filed during 2014-23. This signals the state’s contribution to India’s evolution into a knowledge economy.
Tourism Potential and Connectivity:
Uttar Pradesh, with its rich cultural and historical heritage, has become a magnet for domestic tourists. The completion of the Ram Mandir and the state’s initiatives to promote tourism are expected to catapult tourist expenditures to over Rs 4 lakh crore by the end of this year. This surge in tourism could result in an additional tax revenue of Rs 20,000-25,000 crore for the state in FY25.
The Delhi Mumbai Industrial Corridor (DMIC) and the development of inland waterways further position Uttar Pradesh as a strategic hub for industrial and transport activities. The state’s inclusion in Ease of Doing Business rankings and its marked improvement reflect its commitment to attracting investments.
Historical Significance and Future Prospects:
Uttar Pradesh, historically significant as the seat of Oudh and later the capital of the British-administered United Provinces, is experiencing a renaissance. As it embraces its rich heritage and crafts a narrative of growth and progress, UP stands at the forefront of the new India.
Uttar Pradesh’s trajectory as a key player in India’s economic landscape is undeniable. With a focus on inclusive growth, innovation, infrastructure development, and tourism promotion, the state is not just witnessing a boom but actively shaping the future of the nation. As UP rises, so does the promise of a more vibrant and prosperous India.
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