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Business News/ News / India/  Budget 2024: Census, National Population Register unlikely in 2024 as govt allocates only 1,277 crore
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Budget 2024: Census, National Population Register unlikely in 2024 as govt allocates only ₹1,277 crore

The interim Budget 2024-24 on Thursday allocated ₹1,277.80 crore for the census, a significant reduction from 2021-22 when ₹3,768 crore was allocated and an indication that the exercise may not be carried out even after three years of delay

Budget 2024: According to the interim budget, ₹1277.80 crore has been allocated for census surveys and statistics ( ₹520.96 in 2023-24) (Photo: PTI)Premium
Budget 2024: According to the interim budget, 1277.80 crore has been allocated for census surveys and statistics ( 520.96 in 2023-24) (Photo: PTI)

NEW DELHI : The interim Budget 2024-24 on Thursday allocated 1,277.80 crore for the census, a significant reduction from 2021-22 when 3,768 crore was allocated and an indication that the exercise may not be carried out even after three years of delay.

A meeting of the Union cabinet on December 24, 2019 approved the proposal for conducting the census of India 2021 at a cost of 8,754.23 crore and updating the National Population Register (NPR) at a cost of 3,941.35 crore.

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The house listing phase of the census and the exercise to update the NPR were scheduled to be carried out across the country from April 1 to September 30, 2020 but were postponed due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

The census operation continues to be on hold and the government has not yet announced the new schedule.

Officials said since general elections are due this year, the census is unlikely to be carried out in 2024.

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According to the interim budget, 1277.80 crore has been allocated for census surveys and statistics ( 520.96 in 2023-24).

The entire census and NPR exercise is likely to cost the government over 12,000 crore, officials said.

This exercise, whenever it happens, will be the first digital census allowing citizens to self-enumerate.

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The NPR has been made compulsory for citizens who want to exercise the right to fill out the census form on their own rather than through government enumerators. For this, the census authority has designed a self-enumeration portal which is yet to be launched.

During self-enumeration, an Aadhaar or mobile number will be mandatorily collected.

The Office of the Registrar General and Census Commissioner had prepared 31 questions to be asked to the citizens.

Those questions include whether a family has a telephone, internet connection, mobile or smartphone, bicycle, scooter or motorcycle or moped, and whether they own a car, jeep or van.

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The citizens will also be asked what cereal they consume in the household, the main source of drinking water, the main source of lighting, access to a latrine, type of latrine, waste-water outlet, availability of bathing facility, availability of kitchen and LPG/PNG connection, main fuel used for cooking, availability of radio, transistor, television etc.

The citizens will also be asked about the predominant material of floor, wall and roof of the census house, the condition of the census house, the total number of persons normally residing in the household, whether the head of the household is a woman, whether the head of the household belongs to Scheduled Caste or Scheduled Tribe, number of dwelling rooms exclusively in possession of the household, number of married couple(s) living in the household among others.

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Published: 01 Feb 2024, 05:43 PM IST
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