Sixth Population and Housing Census to begin Wednesday

| Updated: June 15, 2022 11:37:15

Sixth Population and Housing Census to begin Wednesday

The week-long 6th Population and Housing Census will begin on Wednesday digitally for the first time in the country to make it flawless and successful.

The data from the field level for the census will be collected from Wednesday (June 15) to June 21 while this will also be considered 'census week', reports BSS.

The midnight of June 14 (zero hours of June 15) will be considered as a 'census reference point or time' and from that time floating people across the country like at Kamalapur Railway Station would be counted till 6:00 am on Wednesday.

A press conference was held at the NEC Conference Room in the city's Sher-e-Bangla Nagar area convened to brief the media about the salient features of this census.

State Minister for Planning Dr Shamsul Alam, Director General of the Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics (BBS) Mohammad Tajul Islam, Population and Housing Census 2022 Project Director Md Dilder Hossain and team leader, the technical support team of the census Dr Dipankar Roy spoke on the occasion.

Terming this census as an issue of utmost importance for the nation, the state minister said that this is a historic moment for the nation as the data and information of the census is very much necessary for undertaking proper planning.

He informed that the census questionnaire would have some 35 questions while the enumerators would take the answers to questions from people using tabs.

Dr Alam said that all kinds of steps have been taken to create mass awareness among people for bringing them under the coverage of census while emphasis has also been given so that every individual comes under the enumeration process and no one is left uncounted.

He said once the census is completed, around 20 million people are likely to be added.

Answering a question, Dilder said that some 2,000 hot spots both in the urban and rural areas have already been identified to collect the data from the homeless and hapless people.

He informed that none other than BBS would have access to the server of the census while data would remain in encrypted form. Besides, there will be a backup for data in case of any possible attempt of hacking.

Replying to another question, the project director said the census operations would not be hampered due to the polls at Cumilla City Corporation and other union councils.

Dilder said that if anyone remains outside the coverage of the census, then he or she would be able to include him or her in the enumeration process even after June 21 by communicating with the BBS.

The enumerators will continue their operations every day from 8:00 am till dusk while the enumerators would also go to houses of people at night if there is any request.

Besides, basic data from the non-resident Bangladeshis would also be collected in the census.

Answering another question, Dilder said that they would try to give the preliminary report of the census within three months while would try their best to give the final report as soon as possible.

He said that all the recent censuses at the BBS were carried out as paperless through tabs while the upcoming economic census would also be conducted through tabs.

Director-General of BBS Mohammad Tajul Islam informed that they have some additional tabs in their hands which could be used if necessary to ensure uninterrupted operations.

Answering a question, he said that the BBS is yet to reach such a position for conducting a population census every five years.

He, however, said that they plan to update the census after five years or conduct another census. "But, any final decision is yet to be taken in this regard."

Dr Dipankar Roy informed that data on a total of 10 SDG indicators would be available from this census.

So far, four-day training programmes for the district census coordinators cum master trainers, Upazila census coordinators and zone officers, and the supervisors and enumerators were held.

For conducting the census, the web-based Integrated Census Management System (ICMS) and Geographical Information System (GIS) have already been formulated while control maps for the enumeration areas have also been prepared.

To make the next census a success, some 3,65,697 enumerators, 63,548 supervisors, 3,779 IT supervisors, 3,779 zonal officers, 163 district census coordinators and some 12 divisional census coordinators will remain active in various tiers of the census activities.

President Abdul Hamid has already unveiled a commemorative postage stamp marking the census. Besides, Prime Minister Hasina will address the nation at any suitable time while voice calls will be given to the cell phones of people.

The data collected from the census would remain encrypted for which it would be possible to ensure 100 per cent security to personal information.

A state-of-the-art call centre has already been set up at the BBS headquarters from where anyone through dialling 09602998877 would be able to get any census-related information.

The country's first Population and Housing Census was held in the country in 1974 followed by the 2nd census in 1981, the 3rd one in 1991, the 4th census in 2001 and the 5th one in 2011.

In this census, using geographic information system-based digital map, data of all households of the country will be collected simultaneously through the Computer Assisted Personal Interviewing method using digital device 'tabs'.

Under the census operations, demographic and socio-economic data like the number of households and their nature, ownership of homes, the main source of drinking water, toilet facilities, power facilities, the main source of fire for cooking, economic operations, inward remittance, age of household members, gender, marital status, religion, obstacles, education, work, training, mobile phone and internet usage, bank/mobile banking accounts, small ethnic groups, nationality and various district-wise information would be collected.

A supervisor will supervise the activities of some 5/6 enumerators while a zonal officer will supervise the operations of some 120 enumerators or supervisors on average.

Besides, there will be Upazila census coordination officers, district census coordination officers and division census coordination officers to make this census a success.

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