India dropped 17 spots in the Human Freedom Index 2020, a worldwide ranking of civil, economic and personal freedom. The report released on Thursday, placed India at 111th place among 162 countries, as against last year with 94th spot.
On personal freedom parameter, India scored 6.20 out of 10, and 6.56 in economic freedom. The overall human freedom score was 6.43. Switzerland, New Zealand and Hong Kong bagged the first three spots.
However, the authors of the report said they had expected Hong Kong's position to decline in the future, given the 'aggressive interventions' by China in the region in 2019 and this year, Scroll.in reported.
The index published by American think tank Cato Institute and Fraser Institute in Canada also showed a significant decline in personal freedom since 2008. To rank the countries, it took 76 indicators of personal, civil, and economic freedoms into account, from 2008 to 2018.
"Overall freedom has also declined, though to a lesser degree, over the same period," they said. "Of the 12 major categories that we measure in the report, all but five have seen some deterioration, with freedom of religion, identity and relationship freedoms, and the rule of law seeing the largest decreases," the report read.
India has slipped on various global freedom indices. In the Freedom House's report, released in October, showed a decline in internet freedom in India for the third straight year in 2019-20.
The report said India had the most number of internet shutdowns in the world, even excluding the ones in Jammu and Kashmir. The Global Economic Freedom Index 2020 released in September showed India dropping 26 spots from 79 to 105. The report also mentioned that the scope of improvement in economic freedom in the country depended on the next generation reforms in factor markets and in being more open to global trade.
In the World Press Freedom Index, which was released in April, India slipped two places to 142 out of the 180 countries and territories.