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‘Islam’ as ‘others’: A census recheck

Following complaints that those recording “Islam” as their religion were clubbed under “others” during the census from February 9 to 28

Officials to verify ‘wrong entries’ in two enumeration blocks in 16 districts with high Muslim numbers

Following complaints that those recording “Islam” as their religion were clubbed under “others” during the census from February 9 to 28,the Census Directorate in Uttar Pradesh has decided to verify the information in at least two enumeration blocks in each of the 16 districts that have substantial Muslim population.

The districts are Rampur,Moradabad,Lucknow,Bijnore,Jyotiba Phule Nagar,Saharanpur,Muzaffarnagar,Balrampur,Meerut,Badaun,Aligarh,Varanasi,Faizabad,Azamgarh,Gorakhpur and Hamirpur.

Officials said that after verification of the information recorded in “household schedules”,a status report would be sent to the Registrar General and Census Commissioner in New Delhi.

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“ The districts magistrates have been asked to identify the enumeration blocks having Muslim population. They have to send the names of blocks at the earliest so that the work can be started,” said Pradeep Kumar,Joint Director of Census Operations in UP.

Question 7 in the household schedule of the census related to the religion of the respondents. They had six choices,namely Hindu,Muslim,Christian,Sikh,Buddhist and Jain,each having a code to be entered in the form. If a respondent said he had some other religion,then it had be recorded separately.

Before the enumeration,some representatives of Muslim community had complained to the Registrar General of India (RGI) and Census Commissioner that “Islam” was their religion and not “Muslim”.

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“The RGI had directed to write down ‘Islam’ as religion and assigned it code ‘2’,which is the same code as that for ‘Muslim’,if anyone said his or her religion was ‘Islam’. But after the completion of the census survey,some people complained that their religion had been wrongly recorded as ‘Muslim’,of ‘others’,” said an official at Census Directorate.

The household schedules of sample enumeration blocks of certain pockets in a few districts will be checked to find out if the complaint is genuine,Kumar said.

First published on: 13-04-2011 at 04:42:03 am
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