Kerala has toughened its stand against the update of the National Population Register (NPR) by asking its Census officials not to attend training sessions related to the register. The State steps up its resistance even as the national authorities have made it clear that the register will be updated along with the Census in the State.
The Principal Secretary, General Administration Department, has written to all District Collectors stating that the officials need not attend the training session connected with the NPR, if any
Read: What connects the NPR, NRIC and Census?
The communication was issued to the district and charge-level officers of the Census 2021 operations last week while reiterating that “the NPR operations are not undertaken in the State.” The State authorities had taken care to strike down all references related to the NPR in the circular issued by T. Mithra, Director of Census Operations, Kerala, last week regarding the appointment of enumerators, supervisors and field trainers for house-listing and housing census operations and updating of the NPR.
The State government has toughened its stand against the register in the wake of the stiff resistance against the programme.
Incidentally, Vivek Joshy, Registrar General and Census Commissioner, had informed the Chief Secretary that the State government officials would be deployed for the Census field work between April 15 and May 29, and the same set of officials will carry out the NPR update in the State.
The Hindu had reported that the national authorities had insisted on updating the register in spite of the State government's resistance to the programme. The two-day training sessions for most of the districts have been completed. It will begin in Ernakulam and Wayanad districts on Friday.
According to a senior official from a southern district who took part in the training programme, no references were made on the NPR during the training session. There were no questions from the participants too. It was also indicated that the register need not be updated in the State, the official said.
The training classes focussed on the modules for house-listing blocks (HLB), Census-2021 Management and Monitoring System and App developed for the Census. It was mostly a hands-on training programme and the booklets distributed at the classes pertained to HLB and related activities. No publication regarding the register was distributed, he said.
A national-level trainer who led the programme also confirmed that there were no references to the updating of the register as the State government was opposed to it.