Critical Assessment of India's Demographic Data
Prakash Mishra, Institute for Research in Medical Statistics (ICMR), India
Shrikant Singh, International Institute for Population Sciences (IIPS)
India is the first country where Civil Registration System (CRS) started prior to the Census. Although CRS is older than Census it suffers from a completeness problem. An alternate, Sample Registration System (SRS) was initiated in 1969 to provide vital indicators annually but these statistics are not available for the district level. The National Family Health Survey also provides recent updates along with levels and trends in different health indicators but it also does not provide district level estimates. The District Level Household Survey provides district level vital statistics but it has problems related to sampling. Considering this, the Government of India started to strengthen the CRS. Due to this attempt the southern states of India have reached 100% completeness of vital registration, but the problem still persists in other states. The present study aims to critically assess the different sources of data while also suggesting some plausible solutions to enhance the quality of demographic data.