Pakistan set for digital census with tablets supplied by NADRA
The last batch of 17,600 tablets powered by an indigenous solution from Pakistan’s National Database and Registration Authority (NADRA) has been received by the chief statistician of the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS) Naeem uz Zafar ahead of a planned digital population and housing census.
This brings the total number of tablets supplied for the exercise to 126,000.
According to an agency announcement, NADRA also played an important role in distributing the tablets to all the 495 districts, braving the odds to complete the exercise within a period of nine days.
The digital ID authority also made available about 100 experts to help in the training of over 90,000 enumerators who will be deployed on the field when the census begins.
After handing over the tablets, NADRA Chairman Tariq Malik also visited the facility offering some technical services to the census preparation process at the PBS.
Malik hailed the census as a huge step further towards a digital Pakistan: “The digital census is a step that pulls Pakistan out of ancient past and opens doors of a modern future. From scribbled responses on millions of paper sheets to real time validated data in apps on secure devices with satellite imagery – is a step towards digital Pakistan. Big data from digital census will become the foundational system for evidence based policy making for Pakistan.”
The solution from NADRA was developed in just three weeks and includes an Android-based house listing and enumeration application synchronized with GPS and GIS systems, data center and call center services, a web portal and other associated services.
NADRA is the official technology partner of the PBS for the upcoming population and housing census which is the 7th in the country but the first-ever to be done through digital means.
Biometric vehicle registration
NADRA also recently concluded a deal to henceforth conduct biometric checks on vehicle owners as part of efforts to combat fraud in vehicle transfer and ownership processes.
The deal sealed between NADRA and the Sindh Department of Excise and Taxation and Anti-Narcotics will be carried out through the ‘Sahulat Program,’ according to reporting by The Nation.
The first phase of the biometric program will run for three years.
Sindh Excise and Taxation and Anti-Narcotics Minister Mukesh Kumar Chawla praised the partnership saying it will help curb the phenomenon of vehicles operating with fake documents.
NADRA recently partnered with telecoms operators for a new fingerprint system to register SIM cards in Pakistan.