Has the census team visited your home? Here's what to expect

Social media is abuzz with users' population census tales, reservations and observations.
Published April 10, 2017

The population census of Pakistan is currently underway, and citizens cannot help but tweet and post about their experiences.

The census will divulge important information on the demographics of Pakistan, so officials ask a variety of questions so data collectors can measure migration, employment trends, urbanisation, gender configuration, education rates and more since the last census was held in 1998.

Tell us about your interaction with the census team by writing to features@dawn.com

Here are some #CensusStories:

Raiding the streets

George Fulton

"I thought I was being raided this morning as I opened the door to two soldiers in full camouflage uniform, webbing and holding machine guns. Only for a little, old lady to emerge from behind them to ask for my name and NIC number. Census is in action!"

Army and enumerators enter the narrowest of lanes to take details for the census - Photo credit: AFP
Army and enumerators enter the narrowest of lanes to take details for the census - Photo credit: AFP

Provision for disabled persons

Armana Shah

"The census team [just came] again to fill the form and they entered my son's name as a normal person who is a special person (physically disabled). I asked them to enter him as a physically disabled person but the woman said she has no separate column for disabled persons. I said yes I know you are using 20 year old forms, but the Supreme Court has ordered to enter disable persons separately in the form. Again, she refused and said she is told by the seniors to enter only for transgender. But, I insisted to enter his name as a physically disabled person and then she called her senior who told her to write in the gender column.

No 3 for Transgenders

No 4 for Physically disabled man

No 5 for Physically disabled woman

Kindly tell your friends and families if they have a disabled person ask the census team to enter them as a disabled person not a normal person. So that in future hopefully they could get some facilities from the government.

Thank you."

Back to the future

Syed Shahzaman Shah

"Are we in 2017, or am I confused? Argument between these two is going on about pen or pencil, which is nonsense I think. With 3G/4G available in most places in Pakistan can't we do census by giving tablet/mobile devices to enumerators and have real-time transparent demographic updates. Does anyone know how it is done in developed countries?"

Head of the house

Nighat Dad

"Census team: Please call head of the house.

Me: I am head of the house.

Census team: No we meant, 'send a man, your husband? Or father or brother.

Me: Umm I am head of the house.

Census team: Ugh acha...how do you run the house?

Me: I am a lawyer and have my own organisation.

Census team: Lawyer of High Court?

Me: Yes.

Census team: Madam my case is pending in Lahore High Court, can you please help me in dealing with that, my lawyer doesn't follow what I say.

Me: Jee. Take my number and call me later.

End of conversation."

Me With My #Census Security Team During Census Duty..

A post shared by Waseem Sajjad (@waseem9261) on

I'd rather be the 'other'

Nosheen Ali

"Mardamshumari [census] tales

Aap ki madri zaban - Urdu [Your mother tongue - Urdu]

Proceeds to check “1”.

Nahin, Gujrati [No, Gujrati]

Hain?! Aap ke aas paas bhi sab ne Urdu hi likhwai hai [Really? Everyone in your neighbourhood said Urdu]

Nahin, Gujrati [No, Gujrati]

Lekin aap ghar main kia bolti hain? [But, what do you speak in your home?]

I don’t say: Urdu-hegemonic state was intolerant towards other languages and there was little support so my parents switched rather unsuccessfully and I learnt some combination.

Aap Gujrati likhain [Write down Gujrati]

Acchaa..yahan ‘Deegar’ par tick lagana hoga? [Alright, we’ll have to tick ‘other’]

Ji [Yes]

Proceeds to cancel Urdu and checks “Other”.

#countalllanguages #ifyoudontcountthem #idratherbeother."

From the Twitterverse

What is your #CensusStory? Tell us about your interaction with the census team by writing to features@dawn.com