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Lok Sabha adjourned over caste-based census

The Lok Sabha was on Thursday adjourned till noon following uproar over the decision of a Group of Ministers to include caste in census at the biometric stage.



New Delhi: The Lok Sabha was on Thursday adjourned till noon following uproar over the decision of a Group of Ministers to include caste in census at the biometric stage.

Leaders of BJP, JD-U, SP, RJD and BSP were on their feet and started demanding a headcount of each citizen on the basis of caste as soon as Speaker Meira Kumar finished reading out the obituary references.

NDA convenor Sharad Yadav, SP chief Mulayam Singh Yadav, BSP member Dara Singh Chauhan and RJD leader Lalu Prasad claimed that the inclusion of caste in census at the biometric stage amounted to befooling the people.

"This exercise cannot be completed in 100 years. The decision to hand out voter identity cards was taken 15 years ago and has not been implemented completely," Sharad Yadav
said.

He was backed by others and BJP, BSP, SP, RJD members were seen on their feet raising slogans in favour of headcount of every citizen on caste basis.

In the din, Trinamool Congress members led by Sudip Bandopadhyay were on their feet trying to raise the issue of "attempt on the life of Railway Minister Mamata Banerjee" a
few days back.

As the din continued, the Speaker adjourned the proceedings till noon.

Leader of the House Pranab Mukherjee was seen holding talks with the agitating leaders soon after the House was adjourned.

A Group of Ministers, headed by Mukherjee, has decided to recommend to the Union Cabinet inclusion of caste in the census exercise at the biometric stage.

Every person aged over 15 will be photographed and fingerprinted to create a biometric national database that will form the base of a new national population register of
the nation`s 1.2 billion population. The Census exercise was kickstarted on April one.

The biometric stage would see camps being set up across the country, beginning November, to collect fingerprints and iris scan of people.

It is at this stage that the government intends to make records of the caste of a person. The last caste census was carried out in 1931.

PTI

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