Giriraj: Ensure caste census doesn’t count Rohingya | India News

PATNA: A Bihar government official said the government chose not to use the term “census” because it denotes a subject on the Union List. “We want to avoid any statutory complications in future,” he told TOI. While BJP, which has always had reservations about a national caste-based census, gave its nod to a caste-based enumeration, Union minister Giriraj Singh said ahead of the all-part y meeting that care should be taken to ensure illegal immigrants like Rohingyas and Bangladeshi Muslims weren’t part of the headcount.
“I am not against a castebased census. Muslims should be included in it as well since they, too, enjoy the benefits (of government schemes). But the government should be cognizant of the presence of Bangladeshi infiltrators and Rohingya Muslims,” he said, referr ing to 4 lakh such p eople being left out of the 1991 census in Bihar in response to a petition by BJP’s Rajendra Gupta and Janardan Yadav.
Deputy CM Tarkishor Prasad and BJP sta te president Sanjay Jaiswal represented the saffron party at Wednesday’s all-party meeting.
In neighbouring Jharkhand, parties across the political spectrum pressed for a caste-based census in the state soon after Bihar arrived at a consensus on the subject. JMM, which leads a coalition government in the state, wants a census to back its demand for a “Sarna Dharam code” as the marker of the state’s tribal identity.
Nitish said detailed information about every citizen would be collected as part of the enumeration, collated and compiled within a timeframe that would be fixed by the cabinet. The CM said governme nt staff designated for the exercise would be trained to ensure there are no slip-ups. “A proposal will be formally approved by the state cabinet soon,” he said.

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