Report on a Census Enumeration

Publication Year : 1962

The enumeration conducted for the purposes of the Second Population Census of Pakistan, 1961 was carried out, with some minor exceptions’, between January 12,1961 and January 31,1961. An earlier housing census provi¬ded a frame for the population census. The housing census was carried out, depending on the area of the country, some two or three months before the population census. This note is concerned solely with the observations made during the field enumeration conducted for the purposes of the popula¬tion census. It discusses no aspects of the housing census unless immediately relevant to the observations carried out. It is further limited in as much as it discusses practically no aspects of pre-enumeration preparations including problems of questionnaire design, and not at all the question of analysis of results. The taking of a decennial population census is a big event in the life of a nation under any circumstances. It is particularly important when it is a second census, which, apart from the interest, in its own findings, will also enhance the value of the first census due to the inter-censal comparisons which can be made. Furthermore, it is of outstanding importance in the circumstances of an economy with sights fixed far and high on the horizon of better future, but the hopes of which can be fulfilled or broken by the size of this one variable: population growth. Its results are likely to provide the main source of information for demographic research in the next decade. It was not possible to consult with the census authorities on the carrying out of an independent post-enumeration check2. In the circumstances the some¬what unusual alternative of observing the enumeration by the two of us was decided upon.

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