Census or survey? All you need to know as Bihar govt, Centre spar over caste-based scrutiny | Mint
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Business News/ News / India/  Census or survey? All you need to know as Bihar govt, Centre spar over caste-based scrutiny

Census or survey? All you need to know as Bihar govt, Centre spar over caste-based scrutiny

The BJP-led NDA has criticized the Nitish Kumar government in Bihar over the ongoing debate on a caste-based survey.

Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar. (PTI)Premium
Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar. (PTI)

Debate over a caste-based survey in Bihar continued this week with the BJP-led NDA taking potshots at the Nitish Kumar government. The Centre informed the Supreme Court on Monday that it was the only entity that could conduct a census. Meanwhile the Chief Minister and his deputy have continued to stress the difference between a census and a survey. 

“It is the Central government's duty to conduct a census, we only want to conduct a survey in the state. Census is what is done at the Centre level and we cant do that. We want to gather financial information about the different people irrespective of any caste, rich or poor, Hindu or Muslim living in the state so that, we can work for their welfare," Kumar said on Tuesday. 

His remarks echo a similar clarification from RJD's Tejashwi Yadav last week. 

“We don't want a caste census, it is a caste-based survey. The caste census is the union government's right as per the constitution... This will give us the numbers, and we will get scientific data. And we will also do an economic survey. Because what we believe is that people are poor in every section. We will come up with schemes after we know where the poverty is and benefit them. How can we decide whom to get a reservation if we don't know the economic conditions..." the Bihar Deputy Chief Minister had said.

Leading Bihar politicians including JD(U) leader Vijay Kumar Chaudhary have slammed the Central government for filing an affidavit in the Supreme Court against the Bihar’s government decision.

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While the matter had been stalled for some time following the legal and political hurdles the Bihar goverment had received the green signal last month. Chief Minister Nitish Kumar said last week on Friday that the caste-based survey had already been completed.

“The caste-based headcount exercise in the state has been completed. Now the data is being compiled and it will soon be made public. The caste-based survey in the state is beneficial for all. It will enable the government to work for the development of various sections of society," he said.

“The SC never gave a direction to put the exercise on hold. The Patna HC had dismissed a batch of PILs challenging the validity of the Bihar caste survey, terming the state government's initiative perfectly valid and legally competent. The state government resumed the exercise and completed it," Kumar added.

(With inputs from agencies)


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Published: 30 Aug 2023, 05:17 AM IST
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