Making Census controversial

THE PPP petitioned the Sindh High Court on Monday to challenge procedures put in place during the ongoing census and seek disclosure of all data collected during the process. PPP Senator Farhatullah Babar told reporters after submitting the petition that the party has reservations in this regard, adding that access to information is our basic right but several important categories of information have been labelled as confidential in the census.
It is regrettable that some political parties are trying to make Population Census controversial from the very beginning. Census exercise has just started and it would take several weeks to gather necessary data and then compiling it. As was done previously and is done the world over, outcome of the exercise is shared with general public. However, to demand that data should be shared from the word go is nothing but an attempt to scuttle the exercise itself. There are already political leaders like Taj Haider who consider Census a conspiracy to show population of Sindh less. Head count is a difficult and ticklish assignment, which the PPP Government could not dare to initiate during its five-year tenure and which requires involvement of hundreds of thousands of enumerators but Taj Haider has the latest exact data about population of Sindh and also aware of the figures that would be announced after the Census to deny the province of its due share in resources. In such a situation when people have presumed an imaginary figure in their minds and insist on them, how is it possible to share data at the collection or compilation stage? The tendency of making everything controversial including CPEC and Census is highly unfortunate and needs to be shunned by at least those who claim to be mature politicians and gross-roots parties.

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