What is NPR? How is it different from NRC? All you need to know about the mega exercise

The government is all set to carry out two mega exercises -- the Census and updating data of the National Population Register (NPR) -- across the country involving every resident next year. For which the government has approved nearly Rs 12,700 crore for carrying out the Census 2021 and the National Population Register (NPR), which comes amidst stiff opposition against the NRC.

The Union Cabinet on Tuesday approved over Rs 8,500 crore for updating the National Population Register. The updating exercise is to commence from April next year. The NPR is a list of "usual residents" of the country. A "usual resident" is defined for the purposes of NPR as a person who has resided in a local area for the past six months or more or a person who intends to reside in that area for the next six months or more.

The data for National Population Register was collected in 2010 along with the house-listing phase of Census of India 2011. The updating exercise is to commence from April next year. A gazette notification for the forthcoming NPR has been published by the central government in August.

The NPR is a list of "usual residents" of the country. A "usual resident" is defined for the purposes of NPR as a person who has resided in a local area for the past six months or more or a person who intends to reside in that area for the next six months or more. The data for National Population Register was collected in 2010 along with the house-listing phase of Census of India 2011.

What is National Population Register (NPR)?

The NPR is a register of usual residents of the country. It is being prepared at the local (village/sub-town), subdistrict, district, state and national level under provisions of the Citizenship Act, 1955 and the Citizenship (Registration of Citizens and Issue of National Identity Cards) Rules, 2003.

A usual resident is defined, for the purposes of the NPR, as a person who has resided in a local area for the past six months or more, or a person who intends to reside in that area for the next six months. The law compulsorily seeks to register every citizen of India and issue a national identity card.

The NPR exercise will be carried out between April and September 2020 in all states and UTs, except Assam, along with the house listing phase of the census exercise. Assam has been excluded because the National Register of Citizens (NRC) exercise has already been conducted in the state.

The objective of the NPR, being carried out under the aegis of the Registrar General and ex-Officio Census Commissioner, India, is to create a comprehensive identity database of every usual resident in the country. The database would contain demographic as well as biometric particulars.

The demographic details of every individual are required for every usual resident: name, relationship to head of household, father's name, mother's name, spouse's name (if married), sex, date of birth, marital status, place of birth, nationality (as declared), present address of usual residence, duration of stay at present address, permanent residential address, occupation, educational qualification.

In comparison, more details are required for census like information on demography, economic activity, literacy and education, and housing and household amenities besides others. The data for NPR was last collected in 2010 along with the house listing phase of the Census 2011. Updating of this data was done during 2015 by conducting door to door survey.

What documents will be needed?

During the NPR, a respondent will not require to produce any document. As per a statement was given by Home Minister Amit Shah to news agency ANI, NPR information will be self-attested, that is, whatever information is provided by the respondent will be deemed correct and no documents or biometric would be required.

How is NPR different than NRC?

NPR is not a citizenship enumeration drive; it would also include a foreigner staying in an area for more than six months. On the other hand, NRC will contain details of only the citizens of India excluding the foreigners staying in India. The NRC process demands proof of citizenship from the respondents, so those if found without proof may face deportation or detention. But, in NPR, there is no need to provide any document, according Home Minister Amit Shah. In the NPR exercise, a person residing in the country will furnish information through a mobile app and no documents will be sought.

(Inputs from Agencies)

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