NATIONAL

ID cards needed for all citizens: Advani

NEW DELHI JAN. 3. The Deputy Prime Minister, L.K. Advani, today said that it was imperative to have a national register of citizens and identity cards for all citizens to check illegal immigration, which he said, was "the rationale for the 1971 war''.

Addressing a conference of Chief Registrars of Births and Deaths, Mr. Advani said he had been canvassing for the introduction of identity cards to curtail illegal immigration from Bangladesh and "the activities of our western neighbour''.

Such a register must also be updated regularly to keep up with the daily cycle of around 70,000 births and 26,000 deaths.

Mr. Advani said the Register of Births and Deaths maintained in different parts of the country is a strikingly incomplete record. "Expressing his unhappiness over this, he said that although the Registration of Births and Deaths Acts 1969 made such registration compulsory "only about 55 per cent of births and 47 per cent of deaths'' were registered.

Mr. Advani also expressed shock at the high incidence of female foeticide. The sharp fall in the sex ratio recorded in the 2001 census in some parts of the country "came as a rude shock to our consciousness, . . . partly because of the failure of the Civil registration system in the country''.

Recommended for you