Caste Census: History and Debate
SECC 2011 was approved after discussion in the Upper and the Lower Hours of the parliament in 2010.
The first Caste Census in India was held in 1881 and the last one was in 1931 under British rule. After Independence, the first Caste based Census was conducted in 2011 also named as Socio-economic and Caste-based Census 2011 (SECC 2011).
SECC 2011 was approved after discussion in the Upper and the Lower Hours of the parliament in 2010. It was the first Census post-independence that was not done under the 1948 census act of India. It was also the first paperless census in India, conducted on handheld devices. The census was held in 640 districts of India and the first findings of the census were revealed by the then Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on 3rd July 2015.
It is important to know that the Schedule caste and Scheduled Tribes were included in the census conducted between 1951 to 2011, but the OBC and the general category were never included.
The current government is against the caste-based census the reason they put it that the caste-based census will only be used as a political weapon and will only increase the gaps between the castes. The government also puts the sentimental viewpoint that some may not feel ok to reveal their caste, Also the operational challenges and practicality of conducting a caste-based census
The opposition is in favor of the caste-based census and the reason they put forth is the caste-based census will help us in understanding and evaluating the benefits of reservation in the formulation of welfare policies ahead.
Also, read - Socio-Economic and Caste Census 2011 (SECC-2011)
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