Topics Covered: Population and associated issues.
Centre likely to postpone Census to 2022:
The Centre is on track to push the 2021 Census to 2022 on account of the country’s continuing preoccupation with the COVID-19 pandemic.
- The Census exercise was to be conducted in two phases — House Listing and Housing Census from April to September 2020 and Population Enumeration from February 9 to February 28, 2021.
- The first phase of the Census and the updating of the National Population Register (NPR) were initially to be rolled out in some States on April 1, 2020, but were postponed due to the pandemic.
The census provides information on size, distribution and socio-economic, demographic and other characteristics of the country’s population.
- The Census was first started under British Viceroy Lord Mayo in 1872. It helped in framing new policies, government programs to uplift areas of improvement in the community.
- The first synchronous census in India was held in 1881. Since then, censuses have been undertaken uninterruptedly once every ten years.
Who conducts census?
The responsibility of conducting the decennial Census rests with the Office of the Registrar General and Census Commissioner, India under Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India.
The Census is one of the most credible sources of information on the following:
- Economic Activity.
- Literacy and Education.
- Housing & Household Amenities.
- Urbanization, Fertility, and Mortality.
- Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes.
- ‘Rig-Veda’ reveals that some kind of population count was maintained during 800-600 BC in India.
- Arthashastr by ‘Kautilya’ written in the 3rd Century BC prescribed the collection of population statistics as a measure of state policy for taxation.
- During the regime of the Mughal king Akbar, the administrative report ‘Ain-e-Akbari’ included comprehensive data pertaining to population, industry, wealth and many other characteristics.
- Relation between Census and National Population Register.
- NPR vs NRC.
- How NRC is related to Assam accord.
- Constitutional provisions wrt to grant and revocation of citizenships.
- Who carries out Census?
Discuss why a nationwide NRC exercise may not be feasible.
Sources: the Hindu.