ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Error in Editorial

The editorial “Limits of the SECC Data” (EPW, 18 July 2015) has raised pertinent issues. It has been rightly observed that it was somewhat unusual to see the Union Minister of Finance, rather than the Union Minister of Rural Development, holding centre stage at the release event because its execution had been designed and planned by the Ministry of Rural Development. This ministry had also overseen its execution. There can also be no disagreement with the opinion that caste data should have been collected by the agency “with the best skills for the purpose—the Office of the Registrar General and Census Commissioner, India (ORGI).” It is also difficult to disagree with the observation that the socio-economic component of the data should be used for specific purposes for which it was collected. It should not be used, in any case, for slashing welfare expenditure.

However, a mistake in the editorial was that the name of the Union Minister of Rural Development has been wrongly given as Rao Birender Singh. It should be Chaudhary Birender Singh. While the late Rao Birender Singh, an Ahir, was the grandson of the hero of the Revolt of 1857, Rao Tula Ram, Chaudhary Birender Singh is a Jat who is grandson of the legendary peasant leader of colonial Punjab, Sir Chhotu Ram.

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