Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Wednesday announced the conduct of the long-demanded caste-based census in the state.
The decision was taken after an all-party meeting in the Secretariat here on Wednesday evening. Leaders of all nine political parties represented in the Assembly were present in the meeting and gave some important suggestions to the Chief Minister.
"The leaders of every party, including the BJP, agreed on a caste-based census. We will soon announce the entire programme of the census in public domain. In the first phase, we will give proper training to the officials and employees to conduct caste-based census. It will be completed in a time-bound manner.
"We will conduct a caste-based census at the expense of the state government and after the approval of the cabinet of the Bihar government. The points and expenses related to caste-based census will be passed through the cabinet," Nitish Kumar said.
The caste-based census is a long-standing demand for all political parties in the state except the BJP.
Asked about any objection being raised by the BJP during the meeting, Nitish Kumar said: "The leader of BJP was present in the delegation when we went to New Delhi for the meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and its leaders are present here as well. So there is no confusion or objection from the leader of the saffron party."
The Chief Minister admitted that the meeting for the caste-based census was delayed a bit due to MLC elections coming under local body, and panchayat polls, otherwise it would be done earlier.
"Now, we will speed up and soon bring an entire programme for the conducting the caste-based census," he said.