Nagas seek Centre's help to solve census issue

Nagas seek Centre's help to solve census issue

Nagas in Senapati district of Manipur have petitioned Union Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde to ensure that their existence finds a mention in the recent census.

The Nagas alleged that their population figures had not been given since the last census in 2001 as the Manipur government suspected that the statistics of their household were bloated.

The MHA had dispatched a team of officials from the Registrar General of India (RGI) office that compiles population headcount to conduct its own investigation to Paumata, Purul and Maumaran subdivisions of Senapati district to find truth in the claim of Nagas.

The  RGI team found out that the state government had removed the entries of census in the three divisions. The RGI had sent the team again recently and found that Nagas did not inflate the population growth rate in these areas. The growth was 170 per cent more when compared with the 1991 census. As per the 2001 census, the population of Senapati district is 3,79,214.

The MHA decided to intervene after the Manipur government held back Census results and also data of National population register – an exercise going on in the country to give citizenship identity cards. The census is conducted by state government employees and, sources said, the authorities suspect that Nagas of Senapati district, which borders Nagaland, had managed to spike the number of households.

A ministry official has said the Nagas are peeved because the state is not willing to grant them citizenship as the authorities believed that the birth rate seen in the census was “abnormal”. During the 2011 census, an acknowledgement slip was given to  each household.