Former Union Minister and senior Congress leader Saifuddin Soz on Tuesday accused the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) website of tampering with the population figures of Jammu and Kashmir “to decline the Kashmir division’s population by 16 lakhs”.
“The 2011 census shows the population of Kashmir as 69,07,623, Jammu as 53,50,811 and Ladakh as 2,90,492. However, the official website of the MHA in absolutely erroneous figure declined Kashmir’s population by almost 16 lakhs. The MHA website states that the Valley houses a total population of 53,50,811 residents, while the Jammu region houses 69,07,623 residents ,” Mr. Soz stated.
On the one hand, the MHA quoted Census 2011 as its source but the census itself told a different tale. “It is now clear that not only does the MHA misquote census in terms of the Kashmir valley’s population, but it also adds up the population of the State, erroneously,” he observed.
He alleged that the RSS was playing “games”. “The least the RSS and the MHA can do at this stage is to apologise to the nation for their narrow-minded approach to the crucial national issues,” he said.
The entire process of delimitation in J&K smacked of a conspiracy hatched by the RSS to change the demography of the State and ultimately install a Hindu Chief Minister in Jammu and Kashmir, Mr. Soz said.
The Delimitation Commission’s recommendations went against the most crucial criteria of population and showed the commission in extremely poor light, he added.