Odisha Cabinet passes resolution demanding SEBC enumeration along with general census

Bhubaneswar: The State Cabinet today passed a unanimous resolution demanding a Socio-Economic Caste Enumeration be conducted simultaneously along with the General Census.

Speaking to media persons, Law Minister Pratap Jena said the Cabinet during its meeting held today has unanimously resolved that a Socio-Economic Caste Enumeration be conducted simultaneously along with the General Census, either by inserting suitable columns in the census format or by prescribing a separate format for a simultaneous enumeration of Socially and Educationally Backward Classes and Other Backward Classes/Castes.

“As we are commemorating the 150th Anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi’s birthday, this will be a fitting tribute to his idea of India guided by his Talisman in which the welfare of the poorest and the weakest becomes the core objective of the state,” he added.

The Cabinet also resolved to impress upon the Central government to ensure that these enumeration details are published without any delay.

“This shall enable the State government to accelerate the pace of development of these communities leading to inclusive growth with greater momentum. As we are commemorating the 150th Anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi’s birthday, this will be a fitting tribute to his idea of India guided by his talisman in which the welfare of the poorest and the weakest becomes the core objective of the State,” Jena said.

While Odisha has made appreciable progress in improving the Human Development indicators of these sections of society, especially during the last two decades, there is a need to further accelerate this process of inclusive growth and transformation. In this context the Cabinet observed that no formal census including the caste details of the population has been done since 1931, he pointed out.

Unavailability of reliable and authentic data about the exact numbers of the Socially and Educationally Backward Classes and Other Backward Classes/Castes, geographical areas of their spread and density has been a huge challenge in ensuring focussed and outcome specific planning. The necessity of having such data was well appreciated by the Government of India as evident from the Socio-Economic Caste Census of 2011, the Law Minister added.

The Cabinet also took note of the fact that in the proposed formats for 2021 census, there is no provision to capture the details of the SEBC and OBC despite having done such exercise in 2011.

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