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NEW DELHI, INDIA, February 22, 2001: The gigantic venture of India's Census 2001, involving 2 million enumerators visiting 650,000 villages, 5,500 towns and scores of cities to collect crucial demographic and socio-economic data concerning over a billion people could have inspired unity. Instead, it has spawned its own set of controversies, relating once again to age-old caste and communal divisions. The census indeed appears almost designed to conceal rather than collect useful data. There are more than 3,000 castes and sub-castes among Hindus. So far, only the census of Dalits, who constitute about 25 percent of the community, has been made caste-based. A number of inherent flaws in enumeration methodology, and caste and communal prejudices of the enumerators, may lead to the census throwing up "the most complicated lies about the country's sociological and demographic make-up."