Chandrababu Naidu led state of Andhra Pradesh has topped the ease of doing business honours.
The list for 2018 revealed Andhra's neighbour Telangana at the second spot, while Haryana has emerged as the third best. Haryana and Jharkhand, both moved up three slots each, to be ranked third and fourth in the state rankings.
National Capital Delhi has been relegated to number 23 from 19. The last state on the list is Meghalaya, ranked at number 36.
Gujarat has slid two slots to the fifth position. The other states that make up the top nine, described as the top achievers, are Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Karnataka and Rajasthan.
The annual ease of doing business list which reveals the business-friendliness index of various states is a tool, used majorly by corporate and investors. Indian states were ranked on the implementation of 405 business reforms, identified by the centre and the feedback from businesses.
Ramesh Abhishek, Secretary to the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion was quoted as saying, "This time we have taken feedback from industry to see whether the reforms are percolated to the ground level."
He added that from next year onwards, states would only be evaluated on feedback from the industry.
"A large number of states have made significant progress in reforms suggested in BRAP 2017," he said.
Unfortunately, the National Capital Delhi couldn't fare among them.
Delhi slipped four slots from the 19 to 23 rank, with 32% marks. Uttar Pradesh (93%), Bihar (82%) and militancy-hit Jammu and Kashmir (33%) scored better than Delhi.
The national capital scored 121 hits on the reform scorecard and slipped up on 235 initiatives. The city government had reported 34% compliance of the reforms.
The surveyed businesses said the city government, that has engaged in a tug-of-war with the Lieutenant Governor for three years, had done much less.
17 states have achieved a reform evidence score of more than 90% and 15 achieved a combined score of 90% and more.
"The states which have achieved 80% or more reforms evidence score represent 84% of the country's area, 90% of the country's population and 79% of India's GDP," conceded a government official.