On Wednesday, the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) and Leader of Opposition in the National Assembly (NA) Syed Khursheed Shah wrote separately to Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif stating the need for a new and fresh population census to be conducted in Pakistan. The reason they gave was that the last time the census took place, it was 1998 – fifteen years ago. Shah stated that the newly carried out census would prove to be tremendously helpful in the next general elections in Pakistan. The matter, it was stated, ought to be brought to the attention of the Council of Common Interests while highlighting the importance of the population and delimitation of constituencies on basis of the results.

Shah’s proposal for a fresh census has its own constitutional value: the solicited data can help in publishing authentic statistics for the government’s knowledge. With the help of the new information obtained, the government will be in a better and far more aware position to develop programs and initiatives related to health, housing and education urbanization planning. Considering how outdated the previous census is in comparison to now, the new survey can assist in the allocation of assembly seats and constituency limitations while also tackling the issues of our growing population.

Although the national census was scheduled to take place in 2008 and then 2010, years were wasted due to political disagreements. If conducted without further delay, the census data will allow helping governmental institutions in implementing cohesive policies for the general public’s welfare. Small areas and small demographic groups can also be helped with more precision. Given our increasing population’s ever more increasing social needs and problems, a census that is held as soon as possible can address a number of issues that are otherwise ignored due to ambiguous data from archaic censuses.