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Census registers improvement in AP sex ratio for first time

Our Bureau

Hyderabad , Sept. 8

THE sex ratio in Andhra Pradesh has slightly gone up from 972 females for every 1,000 males in 1991 to 978 in 2001. For the first time in the last 50 years, the ratio has shown an upward trend.

The total population of the State has gone up by 97 lakh to 7,62,10,007 during the decade between 1991 and 2001, growing at 14.59 per cent.

Rural areas with sex ratio of 983 continue to stay ahead of urban areas, where the ratio is 965. (Incidentally, the State's ratio is far higher than the national average of 933.)

"The difference is because urban areas offer more educational facilities and employment opportunities, resulting in more males migrating to urban areas leaving behind their female counterparts," said Mr V. Bhaskar, Director of Census Operations and Joint Registrar General of Andhra Pradesh.

He was addressing a workshop on `Population and Development: Gender balance and importance of universal birth registration' on Wednesday.

The 2001 census results throw light on some interesting points in the demographic developments during the last decade.

The backward districts of Srikakulam, Vizianagaram and Nizamabad continued to hold the distinction of having more females than males. While Srikakulam registered 1014 females (per 1,000 males), Vizianagaram and Nizamabad housed 1,009 and 1,017 respectively.

There were 11 districts, including Hyderabad and Rangareddy, with a sex ratio less than the State average.

While Srisailam mandal in Kurnool district recorded the lowest ratio of 638, Ichapuram in Srikakulam registered the highest ratio of 1,179. Incidentally, two other mandals in the Srikakulam district - Kaviti (1,112) and Sompeta (1,109) - followed Ichapuram with regard to high sex ratios.

Detailing the census findings, Mr Bhaskar said that general apathy of the officials involved and lack of awareness among the people were the two main obstacles in registration of births and deaths.

Certificates were not being given immediately as was mandated. Flawed chain of reporting and ill-defined roles too contributed to the problem.

He wanted establishment of clear chain of reporting. "The role and hierarchical position of registrars have to be clearly defined in tune with the chain of reporting."

Steps should be taken to increase awareness on the importance of notifying registration of births and deaths. "One is not aware of the importance until such time one is hit by the need," he said.

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