News:The West Bengal government has stayed all activities relating to the preparation and update of the National Population Register(NPR) due to controversy over Citizenship Amendment Act.
About National Population Register(NPR):
- The National Population Register (NPR) is a Register of usual residents of the country.
- A usual resident is defined for the purposes of NPR as a person who has resided in a local area for the past 6 months or more or a person who intends to reside in that area for the next 6 months or more.
- The objective of the NPR is to create a comprehensive identity database of every usual resident in the country.The database would contain demographic as well as biometric particulars.
- The NPR is being prepared at the local (Village/sub-Town), sub-District, District, State and National level under provisions of the Citizenship Act 1955 and the Citizenship (Registration of Citizens and issue of National Identity Cards) Rules, 2003.
- It is mandatory for every usual resident of India to register in the NPR.
Why do we need NPR:
- Every country must have a comprehensive identity database of its residents with relevant demographic details.It will help the government formulate its policies better and also aid national security.
- It will also ease the life of those residing in India by cutting the red tape.
- It will also help in implementing the idea of ‘One Identity Card’ that has been recently floated by the government.
Concerns regarding NPR:
- The information collected during formation of NPR may be misused if safeguards to maintain privacy are inadequate.
- The NPR has also raised anxieties around the idea of citizenship in the country.
- Apart from privacy,concerns have also been raised over the exercise as a whole.NPR will be the base for a nationwide National Register of Citizens(NRC).
- Hence,the NPR could also have such discrepancies as it happened during NRC exercise in Assam.