NATIONAL POPULATION REGISTER
- November 19, 2020
- Posted by: OptimizeIAS Team
- Category: DPN Topics
Context: The office of the Registrar-General of India (RGI) has said the schedule of the National Population Register (NPR) is being finalised and the information about the expected date of the first phase of Census 2021 is not available.
National Population Register
- It is a list of “usual residents of the country”.
- A “usual resident of the country” is one who has been residing in a local area for at least the last six months, or intends to stay in a particular location for the next six months.
- The NPR is being prepared under provisions of the Citizenship Act 1955 and the Citizenship (Registration of Citizens and Issue of National Identity Cards) Rules, 2003.
- It is mandatory for every “usual resident of India” to register in the NPR.
- The data for the NPR was first collected in 2010 along with the house listing phase of Census 2011.
- In 2015, this data was further updated by conducting a door-to-door survey.
- However, with the use of Aadhaar as the key vehicle for transfer of government benefits in the last few years, the NPR has taken a backseat.
- The NPR exercise is conducted at the local, sub-district, district, state and national levels.
- The NPR will collect both demographic data and biometric data. Biometric data will be updated through Aadhar details.
- In the 2010 exercise, the RGI had collected only demographic details.
- In 2015, it updated the data further with the mobile, Aadhaar and ration card numbers of residents.
- For the 2020 exercise, it has dropped the ration card number but added other categories.
NPR and the NRC:
- Unlike the NRC, the NPR is not a citizenship enumeration drive, as it would record even a foreigner staying in a locality for more than six months.
- With the government insisting that the NRC would be implemented across the country, the NPR has raised anxieties around the idea of citizenship in the country.
- All this is happening in the backdrop of the NRC in Assam which has excluded 19 lakh among the 3.3 crore who had applied.
- NRC countrywide would only happen on the basis of the upcoming NPR.
- After a list of residents is created (i.e. NPR), a nationwide NRC could go about verifying the citizens from that list.