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Home ministry postpones first phase of NPR, Census

March 26, 2020 06:25 AM


Home ministry postpones first phase of NPR, Census

Security forces inspect the site of the attack in Kabul. reuters
HT Correspondent

New Delhi : The home ministry has postponed the exercise to update the National Population Register (NPR) and collection of data for Census 2021 in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak in the country.

The decision comes on the first day of a 21-day lockdown announced by the central government and amid repeated demands from the opposition to suspend the two exercises, which has been seen with suspicion. Critics have alleged that the NPR and Census, along with the contentious Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and the National Register of Citizens (NRC) will affect the minorities in India. The government, however, has rejected this allegation as baseless on several occasions.

In a statement, the home ministry said Census 2021 was scheduled to be conducted in two phases -- house listing, and housing census during April-September and population enumeration during February 9 to 28.

The updating of NPR was also proposed to be done along with Phase I of Census 2021 in all the states and Union Territories, except Assam.

The home ministry said that due to the outbreak of Covid-19 pandemic, high alert has been declared by the Centre.

Officials said since the census and NPR exercise require the enumerators to visit every household and meet people, such exercise is not possible to carry out due to the prevailing situation.

The home ministry had recently said the preparation for the Census 2021 and updating of the NPR were at its peak and will begin from April 1

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