Census 2011 and Indian Muslims
Census is the basis for policy evolving and designing Schemes to address the objective of Welfare State. In the context of Indian Pluralistic Society Census needs to have the Data of Diaspora to meet the Constitutional obligations of affirmative action not only to evaluate but also to disseminate Social Justice. Center of Social Justice has been involved in ‘Policy Advocacy’ at State and Central Legislative bodies since 2004 with the help of gross-out Movements of Dalits, Minorities and Backward Class. It has been campaigning for Linking Census with the Constitutional provisions of affirmative action to address the issues of Marginalized Classes more scientifically. Schemes and policies to address Development issues of these Classes including the Basis of Reservations policy were so-far based on Surveys of Governmental agencies rather than Census. The lacuna of the Data is one of the reasons for the failure of Schemes and Policies.
Our campaign is partial successes when the Indian Govt has formally announced the constitution of Ministerial-Sub Group to looking into the possibilities of having Caste Census.
We have been following the Census-2011 process and came to know that the 1st phase Just completed in some states have Serious data entry errors, which will be fatal to Marginalized communities. We Identified the Problems related enumeration for National Population Registry [NPR] and House-listing Schedules. They are:
A] Names in the NPR Schedule were wrongly entered by the Enumerators. In case of Minority communities this may result in not getting ‘Adhar, [Multipurpose Identity Cards]. More over the data base can be used to get share in the Governance.
B] Entries of Living Standards were not accurate as the Enumerators not spent the required time to get the information and the entries were filled on their assumptions in almost all the cases.
C] The NPR Schedule is not covered NRIs. It will be a serious problem for Marginalized Communities to get ‘Adhar’ once they return from abroad as they were not entered in UIDAI. How far the Passport is taken as proof of citizenship is not clear from Authorities.
D] The Case of Schedules of House-listing enumerators failed to identify Census houses in Commercial areas, Complexes, Hospitals, Hostels etc., as described in 3.16 – 3.29 of House-listing Manual.
E] Column no 17 Dealing with Ownership of the House does not take care of the semi owned houses [ Constructed under Housing loan, etc ]. This will affect the assessment of living standards.
We understand that this has occurred due to various reasons at different level from training of the enumerators to deploying somebody by the assigned enumerator. This will have a serious impact on the Data and on policies evolved on the basis of it.
The variables of Work participation, Education, Fertility, Living standards, Literacy, etc., are essential for planning and Welfare activity of the State. These concepts need to be understood by the community properly to get enumerated correctly. Unlike the previous Census ‘this’ Census is going to have OBC / Caste variable. Getting enumerated accurately is very important for the Marginalized communities to claim their share through the Constitutional Provisions of Affirmative action. In the contest of Question raised by the Courts on OBCs and Muslim reservations – these communities should make their people more aware on Census enumeration. Comparative deprivation of Muslims with other Marginalized section on different parameters will be a scientific proof to claim affirmative action including Reservations.
The issue of Muslim Reservation is directly linked with Census both at State and Central level. In Andhara Pradesh court has time and again struck down the Reservations time and again in view of authentic data on Socio-Educational Backwardness of different Muslim communities / Biradaries.
In view of the Above Muslim Empowerment Movement has decided to have an Awareness campaign with more focus on Household survey scheduled to take place in Feb-April of 2011. The objective is to make the Community aware of enumeration on various variables of Schedule and help the Census Authorities to have the proper data.
For forther details please contact:
Center for Social Justice
1-72-6-A, Raghavendra Colony,
Uppal Ph: 09391334685
Hyderabad – 500039 Id: aarismohammed@...