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Bihar: Caste-Based Census Begins, Nitish Defends Move

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Patna (Bihar) [India]: As the first phase of the caste-based census begins in Bihar from Saturday Deputy Chief Minister Tejashwi Yadav said that the enumeration exercise will give enable the government to scientifically carry out development work in the state for the benefit of the poor.

The caste-based headcount will be conducted across all 38 districts in two stages.

In the first phase, which will be over by January 21, the number of all households in the state will be counted. Yadav also hit out at the Bharatiya Janata Party for its “anti-poor” policies and said the opposition party did not want the survey to be conducted.

“The caste-based survey will start in Bihar today. It will give us scientific data so that budget and social welfare schemes can be made accordingly. BJP is anti-poor. They don’t want this to happen,” Yadav said.

The second phase of the survey which is likely to be held from April 1 to April 30 will collect date pertaining to people of all castes, sub-castes, socio-economic conditions etc.

The decision of a caste census was taken by the Bihar cabinet on June 2 last year, months after the Centre ruled out such an exercise in the Census.

The survey would cover an estimated population of 12.70 crores in an estimated 2.58 crore households in 38 districts, which have 534 blocks and 261 urban local bodies. The survey would be completed by May 31, 2023.

Earlier on Friday, Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar said that the government has trained officials to carry out caste-based census taking into consideration the sub-castes in the state and the financial status of the citizens.

He also stated that the census will be beneficial for the development of the state and the country.

“We have trained our officers to conduct a detailed caste census. This will benefit the development of the state and also the country,” Kumar told ANI during his ‘Samadhan Yatra’ in Sheohar district.

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