Census 2021

Latest Update: The 16th Indian Census, or the 2021 Census of India, which was scheduled to be held in the year 2022 has been further pushed to 2023-24.  According to a letter sent from the office of the Registrar General of India (RGI) to states and union territories, the deadline for freezing administrative boundaries has been extended to December 31, 2022. Generally, a Census can only commence a few months after the administrative boundaries are frozen.

As per rule 8(iv) of the Census Rules, 1990, the boundaries of administrative units of districts, tehsils, towns, etc. shall be frozen from the date intimated by the Census Commissioner, which shall not be earlier than one year from the Census reference date and till the completion of the Census.

The 16th Census of India was initially slated to take place in 2021 but was delayed due to the COVID pandemic.

This topic will cover some of the most important questions in the UPSC Syllabus. You are required to go through the details mentioned below with an increased amount of attention.

Kickstart your UPSC 2023 preparation now complement it with the links given below:

What do you mean by Census?

The question ‘what is census’ can be answered with the simple definition of an official surveyor counting the population of a region or a country. Basically, it is a full enumeration of a country’s population at a specific time. This count gives insights about the people of a country or a region and implies clarity on the future of the same. This includes a systematic calculation, recording, and gathering of information about the people in a given set of the population.

The Census of India: Details

The Census of India UPSC syllabus will include the following facts:

  • The first Census in India was conducted during a span of 8 years, starting from 1865 and ending in 1872. This was done non-synchronously in various parts of India. As the process reached its final point in 1872, this year has been labelled as the first Indian population census year. However, in India, the first synchronous population census was held in the year 1881.
  • The last Census in India was held in 2011. This happened to be the 15th Indian Census. This included two phases, namely, the house listing and the population enumeration. According to the 2011 census, Uttar Pradesh was found to be the most populated state in India. It had a population count of 199,812,341, covering 16.51% of the overall Indian population.
  • In this Census, Sikkim was found to be the least populated state in India, with a population count of 610,577, covering 0.05% of the overall Indian population.

UPSC exam question paper is expected to have questions on the previous Census along with an analysis of the current determinants. For latest current affairs for UPSC, follow BYJU’S.

UPSC 2023

Agricultural Census

The agriculture census UPSC syllabus will cover details of the agricultural distribution in India. It is a process by which data regarding the agricultural structure of a place is collected, processed, and disseminated. The data includes details on the number of holdings, size of holdings, crop area, land use, land tenure, livestock numbers, irrigation, count of household members, gender of the holders, labour, and other inputs related to agriculture.

The World Programme for the Census of Agriculture (WCA) establishes the definition of Census, which is further adapted by different countries according to their own requirements and circumstances.

Economic Census

The economic census provides information on the entrepreneurial units present within a particular country or region. This census report covers the employer information and a country’s economic standards in terms of employability.

As a part of the IAS Exam, this topic will be of immense importance in relation to the details of the Indian population.

Other Related Links

Citizenship in India Citizenship Amendment Act 2019
Overseas Citizenship of India (OCI) Difference Between Nationality and Citizenship
Citizens Charter Citizen-Centric Administration

Frequently Asked Questions on Census 2021


What is NPR?

National Population Register (NPR) is a complete list of the people who are residing in India. This involves both the citizens as well as the non-citizens. This is defined as the first step for creating a National Register of Indian Citizens (NRIC).


What was the total population of India according to the 2011 census?

The total population of India, according to the 2011 census, was 1,210,193,422. The rural population, as per this Census, stands at 833.1 million, while the urban population comprises 377.1 million of the whole population.


How will the Census 2022 be conducted digitally?

The Census 2022 will be conducted with the help of a mobile app and a census portal. There will be a provision for the process of self-enumeration through digital registration of the people themselves.


What was the slogan of Census 2021?

Census is the basis for reviewing the country’s progress in the past decade which includes monitoring the ongoing Schemes of the Government and, most importantly, planning for the future. Keeping true to this idea, the slogan of Census 2021 was picked as- “Our Census – Our Future”.


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