Census Of India 2011

Census Of India 2011

The Indian Census is a credible source of statistical information on different characteristics of the citizens since 1872. This was conducted at different points of time in different parts of the country. In 1881 a Census was taken for the entire country simultaneously. Since then, Census has been conducted every ten years, without a break. The Census provides a snapshot of the country's population and housing at a given point of time. The Office of the Registrar General and Census Commissioner, India under the Union Ministry of Home Affairs is the nodal authority for conducting decennial Census in the country. Census 2011 is the 15th National Census of the country since 1872 and the 7th after Independence.

  Importance of Census
Importance of Census  

Census provides detailed and authentic information on demography, economic activity, literacy and education, housing & household amenities, urbanisation, fertility and mortality, scheduled castes and scheduled tribes, language, religion, migration, disability and many other socio-cultural and demographic data.

This information helps the Central and State Governments in planning and formulation of various policies. Besides, the delimitation or reservation of constituencies-Parliamentary/Assembly/Panchayats and other local bodies- is also based on demographic data.

Census of India 2011

Census 2011 was conducted in two phases. The first phase, called the House Listing or Housing Census was conducted between April and September last year across the country, depending on the convenience of different States/UTs. The second phase, Population Enumeration, began simultaneously all over the country from February 9, 2011 and continued up to February 28, 2011.

  New Features of Census 2011
New Features of Census 2011   Fresh Categories

The following fresh categories have been incorporated for comprehensive and better data:

  • Gender: New category "Other" introduced in addition to Male and Female.
  • Date of Birth question introduced along with Age.
  • Current Marital Status: Separate codes Assigned for Separated and Divorced.
  • New filter Question on SC/ST Introduced - "Is this person SC/ST?"
  • Disability: Household Schedule of Census 2011 attempts to collect information on eight types of disabilities as against five included in the Household Schedule of Census of India 2001. The information is being collected on disabilities namely, disability 'In Seeing', 'In Hearing', 'In Speech', 'In Movement', 'Mental retardation', 'Mental Illness', 'Any Other' and 'Multiple Disability'.
  • Literacy Status for "Other" sex added in addition to existing Male and Female.
  • New Codes under Status of Attendance in Educational Institutions introduced for Not Attending viz., (i) Attended before and (ii) Never attended.
  • Work: Marginal workers have been classified into two categories viz., (i) worked for 3 months or more but less than 6 months (ii) worked for less than 3 months. The definition of 'Main worker' remains the same.
  • A separate code-5 has been included under Non-economic activity for renters.
  • Migration - Provision to specify the present name of the Village/Town of the Birth Place as well as the Place of Last Residence introduced.
  • Name of the Institutional Household is also being recorded.
Census in Schools

Census 2011 has taken initiatives to sensitise school students about census operations. The Census Organization is implementing "Census in School' programme across the country. This is specifically designed for the active participation of children in ensuring authenticity of census data of their families.

The programme covers about 60 to 80 schools in each of the 640 Districts in the country. More on Census in Schools - External website that opens in a new window

Mascot of an Enumerator

The mascot of an enumerator has been created for Census 2011 to make the process more people-friendly. The mascot helps people relate with the Census process and elucidates the key role of enumerators in the process. A toll free number 1800-345-0111 and services of call centre have been introduced for addressing public grievances.

Census Data

According to provisional results, India's population grew to 1.21 billion. The absolute number of children in the 0-6 age group recorded decline from 163 million in the 2001 census to 158 million in 2011. For detailed information click on the links given below:

Number of Administrative Units in Census 2011
  • State/Union Territories: 35
  • Districts: 640
  • Sub-districts: 5,924
  • Towns: 7,938
  • Villages: 6.41 Lakh

The cost of Census 2011 has been estimated at Rs 22,000 million, which works out to a per person cost of Rs.18.19. A total of 2.7 million functionaries worked in the conduct of the census. The census schedules were canvassed in 16 languages. A total of 340 million schedules were printed.

National Population Register (NPR)

A milestone of Census 2011 is the creation of National Population Register (NPR). The National Population Register (NPR) will build up a comprehensive identity database of usual residents of the country. It would have the biometric data and UID Number of every person (15 years and above).

National Identity Cards will be given in a phased manner to all usual residents by the Office of the Registrar General and Census Commissioner, India.

The NPR is being introduced for the first time in the country. More on National Population Register - External website that opens in a new window

  Census Manuals/Circulars/Schedules
Census Manuals/Circulars/Schedules  

Get to know in details various instruction manuals on houselisting & housing census during various phases. It sheds light on instruction manuals for filling up and updating the houselist, household schedule, corrections to be undertaken, guidelines, training, responsibilities and duties of the Census Supervisors.

General Information about Census

According to Article 246, population Census is a Union Subject in India. But, the State Governments provide administrative support in conducting the Census process.

The Office of the Registrar General and Census Commissioner, headed by the Registrar General and Census Commissioner, plans and implements Census. There are field offices, headed by Directors of Census Operations, in all the States and Union Territories (except Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Union Territory of Daman and Diu), which are attached to the office at Gujarat.

Directors of Census Operations are responsible for the conduct of Census in their respective jurisdiction.

The first step towards executing Census process involves preparation of a complete and unduplicated list of all geographical entities in the country, which include States, Districts, Tehsils/Taluks/ Community Development (CD) Blocks and Villages/Town at a particular point of time. More on Census Jurisdiction - File referring to external site opens in a new window

The enumerators, supervisors and other field functionaries visit each and every household and ask questions to filling up Census forms. The information collected about individuals is kept absolutely confidential.

After the field work, the Census forms are transported to data processing centres located at 15 cities across the country. For faster data processing, the Intelligent Character Recognition Software (ICR) is used which saves a huge amount of manual labour and cost. The ICR technology with advanced features scans the Census Forms at high speed and extracts the data automatically. The Census is a statutory exercise conducted under the provisions of the Census Act, 1948 and Census Rules, 1990.

With a history of more than 130 years, this reliable, time tested exercise has been bringing out a veritable wealth of statistics. To scholars and researchers in demography, economics, anthropology, sociology, statistics and many other disciplines, the Indian Census has been a fascinating source of data. The rich diversity of the people of India is truly brought out by the decennial census which has become one of the tools to understand and study India.

  National Population Policy 2000
National Population Policy 2000  

The National Population Policy, 2000 (NPP 2000) affirms the commitment of the Government towards voluntary and informed choice and consent of citizens while availing of reproductive health care services, and continuation of the target free approach in administering family planning services. The NPP 2000 provides a policy framework for advancing goals and prioritising strategies during the next decade, to meet the reproductive and child health needs of the people of India, and to achieve net replacement levels (TFR) by 2010. It is based upon the need to simultaneously address issues of child survival, maternal health, and contraception, while increasing outreach and coverage of a comprehensive package of reproductive and child health services by government, industry and the voluntary non-government sector, working in partnership. More on National Population Policy 2000 - External website that opens in a new window

Photo Gallery

Online photo gallery of Census 2011 and historical photographs on Census of India have been provided.

  Old Census Drives
Old Census Drives   Census 2001

Get detailed information such as National Summary data, India at a glance, States at a glance, district profile, list of towns with population, and gender statistics etc. according to Census 2001. You will also get findings of special studies carried out during the drive. More on Census 2001 - External website that opens in a new window


Please note that few of the links in the Archive section of the Spotlight may not work as the data could be of previous month, year and event.