Sindh suffers too long: Sent Taj condemns approval of Census 2017 results

Nawaz Sharif

The Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) leader, Senator Taj Haider has strongly condemned the approval by the Federal Government of Census 2017 results.

In a statement on Wednesday, he said that it was unfortunate that the Federal Cabinet under the selected Prime Minister had opted to bypass the Agreement of the Parliamentary Leaders of the Senate for correcting the highly controversial Census 2017 results through recount of population in 5% randomly selected population blocks.

Senator Taj Haider said that the above mentioned Agreement of the Parliamentary leaders which also bears the signatures of Senator Azam Swati on behalf of Tehrik Insaf had made possible the passage of the 24th Amendment to the Constitution, which allowed use of the provisional Census 2017 figures for delimitation of constituencies only for the General Elections of 2017 and the by-elections thereof. These figures are not valid for any other election at any level or for the distribution of resources between the Provinces.

The deliberately created flaw in the method used for Census 2017 is its count on de-jure method which does not count migrants from other provinces in the population of the province where they were presently living. This mistaken method was not applied while counting the population of Islamabad, where more than 90 % of citizens are migrants from other provinces. However, this major flaw in counting methodology had greatly reduced the population of all districts of the Province of Sindh. The Agreement of Parliamentary leaders is based on recount of all persons living on any address in randomly selected blocks all over Pakistan which is the universally accepted and implemented de-facto method.

Average Household Size had been greatly reduced in Census 2017 in all districts of Sindh. This decrease was much higher in comparison in districts other than those of Karachi. Unfortunately MQM was speaking only about Karachi Districts and GDA another coalition partner of the Selected Government had supported this gross injustice with the Province of Sindh.

Senator Taj Haider referred to the Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey (MICS) which is conducted in every Province of Pakistan under the auspices of UNICEF every 4 years. MICS for Sindh 2014 on page ix gives the Average Household Size in Sindh as 7.2. If we multiply this figure with number of Households of Sindh recorded in Census 2017 (8,585,610) the minimum population of Sindh in 2017 comes to 61,816,392 instead of 47,886,051 indicated in the anti-Sindh Census 2017. The manipulated reduction of 13,930,341 in the population of Sindh amounts to a reduction of 22.54 % in the actual population of Sindh. In fact the MICS conducted in all provinces of Pakistan every 4 years under the auspices of UNICEF is a most reliable indicator of the respective populations of all provinces, a kind of much more reliable alternate population count than the Census 2017 provides.

“Sindh has suffered too long. The injustices and discrimination against Sindh in almost all national spheres must stop. It does not pay to be over smart. We Sindhis are not prepared to take it lying down any more,” he added.