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The Social Statistics Division (SSD) of the National Statistical Office (NSO) under Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation (MoSPI) is responsible for coordinating development of social, environment and multi-domain statistics. SSD is also responsible for statistical coordination for India in respect of the BRICS related activities.

The ambit of social statistics covers

  • Population
  • Human Development
  • Health and Education
  • Employment
  • Social Justice

While that of multi-domain statistics inter-alia includes

  • Poverty
  • Persons with Disabilities
  • Gender
  • Sustainable Development Goals

With the diverse spread of topics to be covered under each of the subjects, the Division collates and compiles information sourced from national surveys, censuses, administrative data, economic statistics, remote sensing agencies and environmental monitoring systems. These datasets are then combined in standard frameworks prescribed for these statistics, thus providing time-series, comparable across time and space in the form of annual and ad-hoc publications.

SSD has three units namely

SDG Unit


Social and Welfare Statistics Unit


Environment Statistics Unit

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With the aim of taking forward the success of Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), the United Nations (UN) General Assembly, in its 70th Session held on 25th September 2015, adopted 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and associated 169 targets which came into force with effect from 1st January, 2016. The SDGs are a comprehensive list of global goals integrating social, economic and environmental dimensions of development. Further, the SDGs are universal, interconnected and indivisible and hence necessitate comprehensive and participatory approaches in bringing everybody together so that no one is left behind. Countries are primarily responsible for following up and reviewing the progress made in implementing the goals and targets at the national level till 2030. At present, the Global Indicator Framework (GIF) consists of 231 unique indicators to monitor the progress of SDGs at global level. India is committed to implement the SDGs based on the nationally defined indicators responding to national priorities and needs. In this endeavor, at national level, NITI Aayog has mapped the SDGs with centrally sponsored programmes of concerned Central Ministries/Departments, whereas, Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation (MoSPI), in consultation with various stakeholders, has developed a National Indicator Framework (NIF) on SDGs to facilitate monitoring of SDGs at national and sub-national level. At present, the NIF consists of 302 national indicators along with identified data sources and periodicity.

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The Government has notified a High Level Steering Committee (HLSC) on SDGs under the Chairmanship of Chief Statistician of India (CSI) & Secretary, MoSPI to periodically review and refine the NIF.

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Further, MoSPI has released SDGs NIF Baseline Report, 2015-16 on 29th June 2019, SDG NIF Progress Report 2020 (version 2.0) on 31st March 2020 and then SDG NIF Progress Report 2020 (version 2.1) on 29th June 2020 which shows the progress on SDG indicators. All these reports are available on the website of the Ministry.

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The Ministry has developed SDGs India Dashboard, in collaboration with the office of United Nations Resident Coordinator, and hosted it on the NIC cloud server. The dashboard is a unified data repository on SDG Indicators and has the provision of providing data at disaggregated level.

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SSD is also providing adequate technical support to the States, in development of comprehensive and inclusive SDG Monitoring Framework for monitoring of SDGs at State and sub-state level.

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MoSPI has also constituted six Sectoral Committees on SDGs, consisting of members inter-alia, from relevant data source Ministries, UN Agencies/Development Partners, Research Institutions which will mainly work together on global and national indicators of SDGs.

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To create awareness on SDGs, the Division has developed a documentary film on SDGs in Hindi and got it dubbed in English and 15 other regional languages.

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The SWS unit of SSD of National Statistical Office has an important role in the context of multi-domain statistics like population, health & education, gender, poverty, food security, etc. The unit has to play the critical role of setting up collaborations across the different agencies of the government, so that the efforts of each of these agencies could be accumulated to efficiently produce timely statistics that reflect the different aspects of these economically and socially relevant phenomena in the country. One of the roles that the NSO assumes is also that of an aggregator of information of these multi-domain statistics, so that the users have all the necessary information in one place. The function of this consolidated dataset in the form of publications is not just to provide basic information for decision making, evaluations and assessments at all levels, notably by governments, but also to serve as important elements for accountability of public bodies based on achievements.

The unit is also responsible for statistical coordination for India in respect of the BRICS related activities. The statistics data series of the BRICS Countries, released in the form of an annual Joint Statistical Publication, are the result of annual joint efforts of the National Statistical Offices of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa since 2010 and help to disseminate several social and economic data statistics about these countries. The Unit has also been monitoring the Twenty point Programme. The Unit brings our several publications viz. Women and Men, Children in India, Youth in India and Elderly in India.

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The activities of the Social Statistics Division in respect of official statistics on environment in India can be classified into two major domains - Environment Statistics & Environment Accounts. The Division brings out the following two annual publications, covering these two aspects:

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EnviStats India; Vol.I: Environment Statistics

It is released on the last working day of March every year. The publication is based on FDES-2013 prescribed by UNSD for compilation of environment statistics and provides information on fundamental components prescribed in the (FDES 2013) namely.

  • - Environmental Conditions and Quality
  • - Environmental Resources and their use
  • - Residuals
  • - Extreme Events and Disasters
  • - Human Settlements and Environmental Health
  • - Environment Protection, Management and Engagement

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EnviStats India; Vol.II: Environment Accounts

It is released on the last working day of September every year. The publication focuses on an assessment of the environmental resources and ecosystems- in terms of quantity and quality, as also some of the ecosystem services. The issues released so far have covered assets like.

  • - Land
  • - Water
  • - Soil
  • - Minerals
  • - Forest Ecosystems