War of words has begun between ruling coalition and opposition over the Bihar caste census. “The point is that central government wants to stop Bihar government from conducting the caste-based survey. People know that only Centre has the right to conduct a census. No one is arguing that, but they also know that it is not being carried out,” says Bihar minister Vijay Kumar Chaudhary over Centre’s affidavit in the Supreme Court on Bihar caste-based survey.
But the BJP Parliamentarian Sushil Kumar Modi has countered, “Under the Census Act, only the Center has the right to conduct the census. However, anyone is free to conduct surveys and collect data. BJP was saying that this is a survey and not a census. Patna High Court said the same thing that the State has the right to conduct a survey and not a census… BJP filed the affidavit in the Supreme Court according to the stand they had in Bihar. I hope that the Supreme Court will soon give its judgement in support of caste census like the Bihar High Court. We are in favour of caste census.”