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Mega survey fails to count people who need aid the most

Mega survey fails to count people who need aid the most
Highlights

Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao said that the Intensive Household Survey conducted on Tuesday was aimed at ensuring that state benefits reach the deserving as effectively as possible.

Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao said that the Intensive Household Survey conducted on Tuesday was aimed at ensuring that state benefits reach the deserving as effectively as possible. However, many people who most deserve aid were left out of the massive exercise that was done to document the details of the 84 lakh households in the newly formed state, NGO workers claimed.

The mega survey failed to include the details of the homeless, beggars, waste pickers and construction labourersFour lakh enumerators made their way across Telangana for a one-day exercise on Tuesday and even Wednesday to gather residents’ details – name, age, caste, religion, water, gas and electricity connections, disabilities, bank account numbers and movable assets. The Chief Minister said it was essential for the new state, which was carved out of Andhra Pradesh in June, to have access to credible data in order to make policy decisions.

“Though the homeless, beggars, waste pickers and construction labourers are among those who are in dire need of state services, they were not given the opportunity to participate in the survey,” opined Mohammad Rafiuddin, director of the non-profit organisation, Hyderabad Council for Human Welfare, while talking to Scroll.in.
The survey, which cost the state Rs 20 crore, saw most of Telangana shut down on Tuesday. Offices, schools, colleges, shops and even petrol pumps in Hyderabad were closed as people stayed at home to wait for the enumerators.
“In addition, many households in unauthorised slum colonies had been left out of the pre-survey visits over the weekend,” said Srivyal Vuyyuri of the Spoorti Foundation.
The survey had inspired both apprehension and aspiration among the slum communities that Vuyyuri and Rafiuddin work with. While they hoped that they would be given easier access to welfare programmes, most of them were worried about sharing their bank account details. Since both the government and the Hyderabad High Court clearly stated that answering the questions for the survey was voluntary, many decided not to disclose this information.
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