developing country, a standout among the most basic obligations of the government,
up legality and economic advancement, is to guarantee the subjects/population
of that country have true access to essential needs like water, sanitation,
transportation, hospitals and schools notwithstanding different things.
Remembering the ultimate objective to foresee the future for any city or
country, one needs to acknowledge what the typical population levels would be
at a date later on. Regardless, to do that one must know the traverse of its present
masses for the most part all planning or economic anticipating apparatuses are
Tariq Butt (2016) states Pakistan has a long history of census taking and the
first one in the area now comprising Pakistan was held in 1881. Regular
censuses are required to be conducted after every ten years under the
Constitution. After Independence, the first census was held in 1951, the second
in 1961 while the third in 1972 instead of 1971 due to political environment
and war with India. The fourth census was conducted in March 1981 and fifth one
which was due in 1991 could be held in March, 1998 due to specific
circumstances. The political parties were mainly responsible for this
In most developing countries, including Pakistan, the bulk of population falls
outside formal system of social protection and development programs. Hence,
census plays an integrative role too by providing bases for the inclusion of
these vulnerable segments of society into national programs by mentioning them
in quantifiable data (Yamna, Sajid, Faizan, 2017).
Important takeaways from the census 2017 include an overall increase in the
population from the 1998 census by 57% and from the 1981 census by 146.6%. Punjab’s
population is the highest at 110 million while Sindh follows next with 47
million, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa third with 30 million, Baluchistan fourth at 12
million. FATA has a population of roughly 5 million people while the Islamabad
Capital Territory has a population of 2 million. Khyber Pakhtunkhwa houses 913
transgender people and Balochistan 109. In the Federally Administered Tribal
Areas (FATA), the population of transgender people is 27 and in Islamabad 133.
Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KPK) is known as a high birth rate recording province.
Except for some districts, the 2017 Census data released, substantiates this
point with reference to eighteen and above population. The electoral data
reveals that 12 out of 24 districts of KPK have shown an increase of eighteen
and above population. These districts being Karak, Haripur, Abbottabad,
Chitral, Hangu, Swabi, Charsadda, Swat, Batagram, Kohat, Mardan and Lower Dir
(Syed and Farkhunda, 2017).
The data is not only paramount in sketching the region-based development
schemes, and in the allocation of funds but also holds implicit political
significance too. Breaking, dividing and redefining new constituencies on the
basis of the population can perhaps prove to be a political turn over for
legislators (transgender population in Pakistan, 2017).
The higher population implies that Pakistan is now an even more ‘water
stressed’ country. Also, there is a danger of the forest area of the country
being depleted at an even faster rate. The expansion of urban areas could also
reduce the availability of prime agricultural land for cultivation of crops at
the periphery of cities, especially in Punjab (Hafiz, 2017a).
Huma Khan (2017) states the age-old policies designed to manage the population
size of 1998 are still being implemented on the current demography. Secondly,
Pakistan has been home to a substantial Afghan Refugee population, which has
now been ordered to repatriate. As the Afghan nationals have already started to
move back, by will or otherwise, it will certainly have an impact on the
population of certain regions, which include the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) and
Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA). Furthermore, the menace of
terrorism has changed the entire family patterns of the afflicted areas where
many households lost multiple members of the family to brutal incidents of
terrorism. Similarly, the heightened terrorism in the KP and FATA region, as
well as security challenges in Sindh, especially in Karachi, forced many
families to relocate to other parts of the country. The capital of Islamabad is
one such example, which has seen a high flux of residents from Baluchistan,
Sindh and KP region.
Rapid urbanization, population displacement due to security
operations, natural disasters and the rising number of youth has had a
tremendous impact on settlement patterns. The direct implications of new census
would be for resource distribution and electoral politics. But, Pakistan has
also lost out on the opportunity of maximizing on its much talked about ‘Youth
Bulge’. Census shall contribute to more concrete policy driven by evidence
(Yamna et al., 2017).
Apart from policy making, an important dimension of the census is that the
entire concept of representative democracy is based on it. The census ensures
that each community gets the right number of representatives in government.
It’s a must for equitable distribution of funds. It is obvious that for
political reforms as well, the nation needs the most recent population
information. Without this, the Election Commission can’t make arrangements for
the delimitation of constituent electorate and seat quota in parliament, nor
would it be able to manage different issues required for reinforcing a
comprehensive democracy (Yamna et al., 2017).
The implications of the change in population
shares of Provinces due to the 2017 census are significant. First, due to the
decline in share of Punjab it will receive almost 4 percent less according to
the horizontal sharing formula used in the on-going 7th NFC Award. This is
equivalent to a reduction in transfer of over Rs 40 billion. There is little
change in the case of Sindh. However, Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa could get an extra
transfer of Rs 22 billion and Balochistan an extra Rs 18 billion respectively.
This will positively contribute to the process of fiscal equalization in the
country with the rise in the revenue share of the two relatively less developed
Provinces of Pakistan (Hafiz, 2017b).
In Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and FATA, the expansion in populace has assumed a
positive part politically as clearly, in past evaluation the number was not as
much as the present, the quantity of political seats for KP and FATA will be
expanded at this point along these lines, more delegates of the territory will
be in the parliament now. The vote bank for MPA and MNA has expanded also. On
monetary the effect is very antagonistic as the economy development rate is
less for the expanded populace, and for the most part we have youth bulge and
they should be suited some place after their education and the industrial
sector can’t bear the cost of or surpass a cutoff and each division needs
specialists rather than fresh graduate, with more populace, the agribusiness
arrive has reduce as the interest for houses have expanded and the KP’s wheat
fields have influenced by it and as opposed to delivering economy advantage,
the land is less to simply satisfy the household needs. The natural assets are
depleting quickly and rather one create income by trading it to different
countries, is being utilized by the populace itself like oil and gas generation
by Karak district.
The populace Census 2017 is a vital development as it will be the sixth census
in a long time since independence. Pakistan is presently rising as a dynamic
state in the worldwide sphere; where different nations, particularly the Gulf
and European states – for venture prospects – are currently moving toward the
once abandoned state. Pakistan’s human resources is an advantage, and its right
figure alongside the state’s capacity to give fundamental social services, will
additionally help with inspiring the social prosperity. The key components,
which make Pakistan an appealing center point for ventures must be managed to
achieve the long term objectives; where Pakistan does not have any desire to
stay as a developing nation