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Census Reports 1931

Census Reports 1931


CHAPTER - 1.

Distribution and Movement of Population

Section I: - Scope of the Report

 

   1.    The area covered by the sixth general census of India is approximately identical with that covered by the census of 1921 and differs little from the area of previous occasions from 1881 onwards; 2,308 sq. miles containing some 34,000 inhabitants have been added in Burma and in the North of Assam, while on the other hand, six sq. miles have been lost to Nepal. The statistics therefore cover the whole empire of India with, Burma and the adjacent

Year

Sq. Miles

Increase

1881 1,382,164 --

1891

1,560,160

177,536

1901

1,766,597

206,437

1911

1,802,657

36,060

1921

1,802,332

2,675

1931

1,808,679

3,347

 

 islands and islets (Exclusive of Ceylon and the Maldives) as well as Aden and Perim Island, but not the Kuria Muria Islands* and Sokotra, which is part of the Aden Protectorate, administered from Aden on behalf of the Colonial Office, and not part of British India. The statistics the tables do not of course cover those parts of the peninsula, which are not parts of the British Empire, that is to say, Afghanistan, Nepal, Bhutan and the French and Portuguese possessions, the area and population of which, together with the rate of increase since 1921 where available, are shown in the marginal table. For the rest the scope of this census extended to the whole of the peninsula of India, forming what is commonly described as a sub continent between long. 61 o and 101 o E. and lat 6 o to 37 o N. Some information has also been included with regard to natives of India resident permanently or temporarily outside the Indian Empire or serving on the High Seas at the time the census was taken. Obliviously within an area of such

Changes in external area since 1921

--

Sq. Miles.

Population

Assam

+908

+15,711

Burma

+1,400

+18,327

United Provinces

- 6

-130

Total Net Addition

+ 2,302

+ 33,908

 

 size, part of which is well within the temperate zone while part is almost equatorial, the diversity of condition both of the population and of its environment must be very great indeed. Geologically, while the peninsula is one of the oldest of the world's formations, the Himalayas are one of the most recent. Not unnaturally therefore there is a great variety of physical feature, varying not only from the loftiest mountains of the world to flats salted by every tide, but from sandy deserts with a rainfall of five inches or less in a year in the north west  to thickly wooded

--- 

Area in sq. miles

Population 1931

% of increase since 1921

Afghanistan

250,000

7,000,000

..

Bhutan

20,000

250,000

..

Nepal

54,000

5,600,000

..

French India

196

286,410

+6.24

Portuguese India

1,461

579,969

+5.79

 

 evergreen hills which have never less than 100 inches and here and there get 500 inches of rain or even more in the east and south. Again in northern India there are extremes of temperature - 120 o of heat dropping to cold below freezing point, while in the south the temperature is almost static in its heats and humidity. As might be expected the physical features of the inhabitants are no less variable than those of their environments. Any haphazard collection of Indians will afford types of very different ethnic groups, though the

 

 

Note : The population of these islands remains conjectural, and the only information that can be had about them was obtained in 1920 from the senior naval officers at Aden it is printed in part III of this Report, since, although out of date, it appears to be the latest information available. The question of the language of Sonora formerly perhaps written, but now a spoken language only, is of some interest, as are likewise habits and customs of the populations of these islands some of whom in Sonora are cave dwellers; it is therefore unfortunate from a scientific point of view that no investigation has ever apparently been made.

 

composition would vary according to the locality. The number of languages, as classifieds by sir George Grierson in his Linguistic Survey of India and exclusive of dialects, is 225 by the returns of 1931. Creeds may be less numerous, but castes, customs and sects must be no peoples to be covered by this report present every aspect from that of the latest phase of western civilization to that of the most India, still exist by hunting and collecting forest produce without ever apparently of so large and diversified an area must, if it is to be contained in a volume, be of a superficial nature, leaving the closer examination of the figures and facts revealed by enumeration to the reports severally undertaken for each of the provinces and larger States.

Serial No. Of Volume

Parts contained Province, etc, treated Author

Vol. I

(i) Report (ii) Tables (iii) Appendix vol.

India

J.H. Hutton

Vol. II

One

Andaman and Nicobar

M.C.C Bonington

Vol. III

(i) Report (ii) Tables

Assam

C.S. Mullan

Vol. IV

One

Baluchinstan

Gul Mohhammad Khan

Vol. V

(i) Report (ii) Tables

Bengal

A.E. Poter

Vol. VI

One

City of Calcutta

A.E. Poter

Vol. VII

(i) Report (ii) Tables

Bihar and Orissa

W.G.Lacey

Vol. VIII

(i) Report (ii) Tables (iii) Aden

Bombay with Aden

A.H. Dracup and H.T. Sorley. D.S.Johnston

Vol. IX

One

Cities of Bombay

H.T. Sorley

Vol. X

One

Western India States Agency

A.H. Dracup and H.T. Sorley

Vol. XI

(i) Report (ii) Tables

Burma

J.J. Beninson

Vol. XII

(i) Report (ii) Tables

Central Provinces and Berar

W.H.Shoobert

Vol. XIII

One

Coorg

M.S. Mandanna

Vol. XIV

(i) Report (ii) Tables

Madras

M.W.M. Yeatts

Vol. XV

One

North West Frontier provinces

G.L.Malam and A.D.F. Dundas

Vol. XVI

One

Delhi

Ahmad Hasan Khan

Vol. XVII

(i) Report (ii) Tables

Punjab

Ahmad Hasan Khan

Vol. XVII

(i) Report (ii) Tables

United Provinces of Agra and oudh

A.C. Turner

Vol. XIX

(i) Report (ii) Tables

Baroda State

S.V. Mukerjee

Vol. XX

(i) Report (ii) Tables

Central India agency

C.S. Venkatachar

Vol. XXI

One

Cochin State

T.K. Sankar Menon

Vol. XXII

(i) Report (ii) Tables

Gwalior state

Rang lal

Vol.  XXIII

(i) Report (ii) Tables

Hyderabad State

Ghulam Ahmed Khan

Vol. XXIV

(i) Report (ii) Tables

Jammu and Kashmir state

Anant Ram

Vol. XXV

(i) Report (ii) Tables

Mysore State

M.Venkatesa Iyenger

Vol. XXVI

One

Ajmer Merwara

B.L. Cole

Vol. XXVII

One

Rajputana Agency

B.L. Cole

Vol. XXVIII

(i) Report (ii) Tables

Travancore State

Niranjan Pillai

 

   2.    At the same time in spite of this great variety the existence for the most part of a uniform system of administration and of a fairly general distribution of the different racial types from which the population is drawn, together with a similar, if perhaps less even distribution of religious and social systems, contribute to give a certain uniformity, if not unity, to the whole, which in spite of local differences is obviously capable of national consciousness which increases with the spread of education. For the difficulty occasioned by great diversity in treating India as a whole is experienced likewise to a more limited extent in each in treating India as a whole is experienced likewise to a more limited extent in each Province and in most States, since the political boundaries have generally little relation to any other. The difficulty of dealing with the population question by natural divisions in thus greatly enhanced. Obviously the density of the population is in immediate relationship to the conformation of the soil, to the rainfall and to crops, all of which are inter dependent, but since the boundaries of administrative units run counter to the divisions of nature, any treatment of the population according to natural divisions is likely to involve the dissipation of figures returned by administrative units into a set of entirely different combinations. This has been attempted for India as a whole on some previous occasions, but the information obtained by such a treatment, however interesting academically, is of little or no administrative value. Demography by natural divisions therefore has been limited to the individual reports of provinces, since in some of the provinces and states the natural divisions are less diverse from divisions political than they are when India is treated as a whole, and within the administrative unit may even be of some practical application.

 

   3.    In addition to the actual population of India some attempt has been made to give information as to Indian nationals in other countries or on the High Seas. These figures are necessarily incomplete, but perhaps go further than they have done on previous occasions by including returns of Indian crews on ocean going vessels shipped during the eight months or so that preceded the final enumeration. Though not in India at the time of the census, these crews form a permanent part of the population visiting their homes from time to time and in many cases returning agriculture as a subsidiary occupation. Strictly speaking therefore, although the census in intention is one of the de facto population that is of the numbers found in India on February 26 th , 1931 and not as in the case of the United States, for instance, a de jure population, the terms of a census of actual population have not been observed with excessive punctuality. This indeed would have been impossible, since the remoteness of some parts of India, the difficulty of communications and limitations imposed be water, snow and wild animals make a completely synchronous enumeration of the whole peninsula an absolute impossibility


Section II: - Distribution and Movement

   4.  The total area covered by this census amounts to 18 hundred thousands sq. Miles and the population inhabiting it to 353 millions giving a density for the whole area of 195 persons per sq. mile. This density however is a very variable factor appearing at the lowest as 6.5 persons per sq. mile in the mean density of Baluchistan, Chigai district of which has only one person to the square mile, and at its highest at about 2,000 persons per sq. mile in the most thickly

populated parts of the south west coast, the general density of Cochin State, including both the thickly populated coast lands and the almost uninhabited highlands, being 814.2 persons per sq. mile and reaching in one village the amazing maximum found in any purely rural population of over 4,000 persons to the sq. mile. There is, however, in Bengal an even higher general level of density, since the Dacca Division has a mean density of 935 persons for a population of 13,864,104, and reaches a rural density 3,228 per. Sq. mile for a Lohajang thana, and a mean density of 2,413 for Munshiganj sub division which has an area of 294 sq. miles. Of the total population 256,859,787 represents the population of British India proper, the area of which is 862,679 sq. miles, and 81,310,845 that of the States with an area of 712,508 sq. miles. British India with Burma has a population of 271,526,933 and the proportion of the population of the states to British India is 23 to 77 when Burma is included. On the other hand if she be excluded it is 24 to 76. It has been already mentioned that the density of the population varies largely according to the rainfall and it may here be pointed out that in the densest areas ? those of Cochin, of eastern Bengal, the north east of the united provinces and of Bihar, the rainfall is heavier than in any other part of India except Assam, where large tracts of hills and forest reduce the population in proportion to the area, and in southern Burma where there is considerable room for the increase of population and where also there are considerable room for the increase of population and where also there are considerable areas of forest and hills. With India's present population and area we may compare England and Wales with an area of over 58,000 sq. miles and a population of nearly 40,000,000 and a density of 685 persons per. Sq. mile, or Europe as a whole area 3,750,000 sq. miles, population 475,000,000 mean density 127 persons per sq. mile, with the united states of America-area 3,027,000 sq. miles, population 123,000,000 persons per sq. miles 41, or China the area of which including Tibet, Mongolia, Chinese, Turkestan and Manchuria is estimated at 4� million sq. miles and the population of which according to the latest estimate, that of professor Willcox, is 342,000,000 giving a density of 80.5 persons per sq. mile, though in the fertile areas of course much heavier than this. Indeed a more useful comparison should be with China proper, having an area of about 1.5 million sq. miles and a genera density of probably 200 to 220 persons per. Sq. mile. It may be added that the total population of the world is now estimated at about 1,850,000,000 and if this be the fact, the population of India forms almost one fifth part of that of the whole world. It should be added, as regards area, that the survey of India is now revising the official figures of the area of districts and provinces which will involves some modification of the figures given in the census reports. Revised figures were not ready in time to be utilized generally at this census, but the necessary changes in area and density are for the most part small and unimportant.

   5.  The actual increase since 1921 is 33,895,298 that is to say, 10.6 percent on the population at the last census and 39 percent on the population of India fifty years ago and an increase of 12 persons per square mile in 50 years, during which time the increase in area has been principally, if not entirely,  confined to comparatively  thinly

Census of population

Period

Increase

 

Increase due to

Total increase percent.

Inclusion of new area

Actual increase of population

1881

253,896,330

1872-81

47,733,970

33,139,081

14,594,889

23.2

1891

287,314,671

1881-91

33,418,341

5,713,902

27,704,439

13.2

1901

294,361,05

1891-01

7,046,385

2,62,077

4,374,308

2.5

1911

315,156,396

1901-11

20,795,340

1,793,365

19,001,975

7.1

1921

318,942,480

1911-21

3,786,084

86,633

3,699,451

1.2

1931

352,837,778

1921-31

33,895,268

35,058

33,860,240

10.6

 

Total

 

1881-31

98,941,448

10,301,035

88,640,413

39.0

 populated areas, and amounts to 426,055 sq. miles. These figures may be compared with an increase in England and Wales since last census of only 5.4 percent, but of 53.8 percent, in the last 50 years, with an increase of nearly 18 percent in Ceylon and with an increase in Java of 20 percent, since the last census and of as much as 26 percent in the outer islands of the Netherlands Indies. The population of java is of course not comparable with that of India as a whole on account of its small size and limited area, but having (With Madura) the very high density of 817 persons per square mile it is comparable with the more densely populated parts of India already mentioned. This illustrates the fact that the density in India is so variable that it is impossible to consider the question of movement of the population without going into the question of movement of the population without going into the question of the distribution and variation of density, for density of population in India depends not on industry, as in the United Kingdom, but on agriculture, and is greatest of course in the most fertile areas. At this census, however the greatest increase is in the states, where generally speaking the density is lowest, and therefore the increase in the population shown by the figures of this census appears at first sight indicative of pressure upon the margin of cultivation, but while the greatest increase has been in Bikaner (41.9 percent) this must be put down largely to the increase of irrigation and to the consequent immigration from outside, and one of next highest increases is that of Travancore in which the density was already among the highest in India. The increase in Hyderabad state again is partly to be attributed to an increase of efficiency in the taking of the census and cannot therefore be safely used as a basis of any comparison of the population as it is now and was then. Obviously the greatest increase in population is to be expected in areas such as that Burma where the rainfall is above the mean and the density of the population below it. Where the rainfall and the density are at balance, that is where the population is dense and the rainfall is just adequate as in the southern Punjab, eastern Rajputana, United Provinces, Central India generally and H.E.H. the Nizam's dominions, irrigation has abated the liability to complete loss of crop, and improved communications have made it possible to prevent heavy loss of life in times of scarcity, thus enabling the population to increase on the margin of subsistence. How high a population can be supported by agriculture when conditions are favourable, is shown by Cochin with areas here and there carrying over 2,000 and in one rural unit actually 4,090 persons to the sq. mile on land producing rice and coconuts, but principally the latter which leaves more room for the erection of buildings and brings in a higher return than rice in actual cash. In such areas, e.g., Cochin and Travancore, the increase in the population has been higher than in the sparsely populated areas like Baluchistan or Jaisalmer State where there is no general extension of irrigation, although there would appear to be more scope for an extension of cultivation. On the other hand when these thickly population areas are examined in detail it appears that the actual rate of increase in population is greatest in the less populated, and less fertile, areas. Thus in Travancore, there are three natural divisions the lowland ? very fertile, the midland ? less so, and the highlands, where the staple crop is tapioca and where irrigation is not practiced. Now in these three natural divisions the density in 1921 was 1,403 persons to the sq. mile, 700 persons and 53 respectively, which increased during the decade to 1,743,892 and 82 that is by 24.2, 27.4 and 54.7 % respectively, showing a vastly higher rate of increase in the area of least density which is also the area of least fertility, though not as great a numerical increase. Similarly in Bengal the greatest rate of increase has been in the Chittagong Hill Tracts, and in Madras in the Nilgiris. Where, therefore, there is a population already dense, there is a clearly perceptible spread towards the less profitable land.

The increase of population has also been dependent in some cases on migration, while, on the other hand, the apparent increase may have depended on the failure to migrate. Thus the increase of 35% in Ahmadnagar district, a rather barren upland in the Deccan which suffers from recurring famines, is not due so much to a series of good years or to an extension of cultivation on the subsistence margin, as to trade depression, resulting in numbers of the population staying at home instead of migrating to the ports of Bombay and elsewhere where in normal years they are employed during the census months of February and March. Bombay shows a corresponding decrease, probably due, in the particular case of Bombay, largely to the same cause. Other decreases there are which are not so easy to explain.

   6.  Immigration, when India is taken as a whole, influences the population very little. Table VI shows 730,562 persons as born outside India as against 603,526 in 1921, without taking count in either case of persons born in French or Portuguese possessions. The increase is almost entirely in persons born in Asiatic countries. Against this there must be set off on account of emigration about one million persons who are estimated as having emigrated during the decade under reviews. Migration, however, is of more importance as affecting internal fluctuations of populations, varying in British India from 1,244,249 (net) immigrants into Assam o 15,536 (net) immigrants into the North ? West Frontier Province. These figures however include all those whose birth-place was outside the province, and do not refer to the decade 1921 ? 31 only. If we take the actual increase due to immigration during the decade in Assam it is found to be only 121,648* consequently if a percentage be taken on the increase of population Assam owes only 10.5 percent of its increase to immigration, though its immigration figure is the highest among all provinces. Conversely Bihar and Orissa with the greatest loss by emigration shows an increase of 10.8 a little more than that for all India, in spite of the fact that the total loss by emigration is equivalent to almost a third of the actual figure of increase. Migration as between British India and the states has tended in the past to be from the latter to the former, but during the last decade this position has been reversed and the trend of generally lower. Bikaner, where the immigrations total 161,303, i.e., 58% of its increase in population, is a striking instance ; the greater number of its immigrants (about 54%) come from British India, and while the natural increase of the population of Bikaren State plus the normal immigration as recorded in 1921 would have resulted in a general increase of 28% and thereby brought the population back to the 1891 level merely, the increase at this census is much in excess may be put down entirely to the extension of irrigation.

   7.   Another factor to be considered is the relation of the birth rate to the death rate and this factor is far from being the same different sections of the population. How far the fecundity of different races and castes in India is the result of environment and how far it may have become an inherited racial trait fixed at some period in the past history of the people, and how far it depends on prevailing social practices, is extremely difficult to determine in the light of the existing information, but it is to show that there is marked variation in different parts of India and this question will be reverted to in the chapters on age and sex. Meanwhile it is enough to point out that in India the birth rate is everywhere much higher than in Europe, largely on account of the university of marriage, the Parsis being perhaps the only Indian community in which late marriage and small families are the rule instead of the exception. The birth rate is lower among the Hindus than in most of other communities probably to some extent on account of the general disapproval of widow remarriage, resulting in larger numbers of women being unreproductive at the child bearing age, and to some extent on that of the greater prevalence of immature maternity. On the other hand, the high birth rate of India is largely discounted by a high death rate, particularly among infants as also apparently among women at child birth. Here again social factors have to be reckoned with, the customs of purdah perhaps exercising its worst effect among the poorer class of Muslims who appear to be more rigid in its observance than the corresponding class of Hindus. This effect is particularly noticeable in crowded urban areas, in which the space available to a women in purdah and poor circumstance is so small as seriously to affect her health. In the matter of epidemics and of deaths from famine or want, the decade has been particularly favorable to an increase in population. It is true that the influenza epidemic at the end of the previous decade is believed to have fallen most severally on the most reproductive ages and should therefore have had a much more lasting effect than the reduction caused by famine which takes in the decade under review, and every year sees improved methods of fighting such epidemics as cholera, plague or Kala azar. Indeed a completely effective treatment for the latter pest has been perfected since the last census, and has made it possible to stamp out the disease. The antimony treatment of kala azar was discovered as early as 1931, but the original treatment took three months to apply and therefore did little to prevent the epidemic. The treatment with organic antimony compounds, introduced about 1917, reduced the period of treatment o a month. The improved treatment introduced during the 1921-31 decade however cures the disease in ten days or even less.

Province (British Territory only)

Variation 1921-1930 according to vital statistics (excess of births over deaths +, deficiency -

Variation 1921-1930 according to census, (excess of births over deaths +, deficiency -

Difference excess of column 3 on column 2.

Population under registration 1921.

Difference percent of population under registration?

 

1

2

3

4

5

6

Assam

+450,854

+1,163,123

+712,269

6,852,242

+10.39

Bengal

+1,463,484

+3,411,695

+1,948,211

46,522,293

+4.19

Bihar and Orissa

+3,254,095

+3,682,158

+428,063

34,004,546

+1.26

*Bombay

+1,728,161

+2,587,404

+859,243

19,165,614

+4.48

Burma

+715,458

+1,454,954

+739,496

10,822,618

+6.83

Central province and Berar

+1,423,608

+1,594,963

+171,355

13,912,760

+1.23

Delhi

+53,132

+147,794

+94,662

500,539

+18.91

Madras

+4,398,902

+4,421,122

+22,220

41,002,696

+0.05

North west Frontire Provinces

+94,759

+173,736

+78,977

2,135,573

+3.70

Punjab

+2,428,382

+2,895,374

+466,992

20,517,606

+2.28

United provinces

+3,927,768

+3,033,694

-894,074

45,35,87

-1.97

 

Total

+19,938,603

+24,566,017

+4,627,414

240,812,24

+1.92

Excludes Aden
? The variation shown in this column would of course be less in the case of excesses or more in the case of excesses or more in the case of deficiency had the population under registration shown column 5 been annually adjusted by deducting reported deaths and adding reported births.

A brief reference to vital statistics will be found in Section 76 (Chapter IV) below. In view of the admitted inaccuracy of these statistics in many provinces, the discrepancy between the 1931 population as it should have been according to those statistics and as it was found to be by the census is no cause for surprise. The figures are shown in the marginal table, and a calculation of the intercensal population will be found at the end of the chapter in subsidiary Table III, while subsidiary Tables VIII to XI contain additional material with reference to vital statistics.

   8.   As regards scarcity, improvements in communications, and consequently in case of distribution, nowadays prevent anything like the famine mortality of a century ago, while taking India as a whole the decade ending in 1931 was a prosperous one in the matter of crops, the general economic depression that has supervened having been little apparent outside one or two restricted areas until 1931 itself, so that for a population mainly agricultural the conditions have been very favourable to an increase in population. Nevertheless the decade opened, as it has since closed, in gloom. The frontier was disturbed ; the effects of influenza and the bad monsoon of 1920 were still active; trade was depressed; prices were high; finances were embarrassed, and the non co-operation movement was rampant. From this position there was a rapid recovery; a series of good harvests followed almost all over India

 

In Bengal there were floods, it is true, and floods proved to be the principle cause of local distress and scarcity during the decade in India generally, as no province completely escaped the inundation of some portion in the ten years under review. But taking India as a whole the first five years were generally above the average, or little below it. Famines were local and not very serious, though one unfortunate district in Madras had famine declared in it officially in three seasons. Almost to the end of the decade the prices of cotton remained consistently remunerative. The end of the decade showed the most deterioration from this average of agricultural prosperity. Scarcity in some parts e.g., in the United Provinces, and the heavy fall in prices of agricultural produce recreated a position not unlike that of the beginning of the decade, but with the additional embarrassment of a population greatly increased by the

intervening prosperity. Wages however did not fall as rapidly as prices, and up to the time of the census agricultural prosperity on the whole was greater than ten years before, though the increase in population had diminished the size of holdings. Trade and industry followed much the same course, since the depression, though severely felt by the tea industry as early as 1928, had only just become general by the time of the census. On the other hand much permanent improvement had been carried out in communications everywhere, and a new port for ocean going steamers had been constructed at cochin and another begun at Vizagapatanam.

Above all a number of large schemes of irrigation and hydroelectric power development have been completed, particularly in the northwest and south of India. Public. Health has been exceptionally good during the decade; cholera and plague took much less than their usual toll of life, and kalazar was suppressed by the perfection of an easy cure. The comparative deposits in savings banks and state of co-operative societies indicate the general rise in prosperity throughout the decade in 1921 and 1931, tables of which are given in the statements below:

Post office circle

Post office savings bank Deposits

No. of banks

No. of accounts

Amount of Deposits in rupees

1920-21

1931-31

1920-21

1931-31

1920-21

1931-31

Bengal and Assam

2,40

3,141

528,427

615,785

5,27,34,019

8,99,83,627

Bihar and Orissa

895

1,037

124,361

158,943

1,26,42,858

2,55,71,070

Bombay*

1,627

1,823

375,170

333,793

4,85,15,721

5,66,65,593

Burma

362

511

70,017

87,246

72,84,237

1,26,25,298

Central

801

1,234

95,569

129,045

1,27,62,966

2,10,15,173

Madras

1,838

2,279

207,675

380,358

1,40,38,563

2,56,08,800

Punjab and N.W. F.P. ?

997

1,076

241,494

358,563

4,48,87,062

6,76,83,111

United Province

1,453

1,485

235,244

347,269

3,5,68,516

5,90,40,642

Sind and Baluchistan

..

260

..

66,611

..

1,20,66,560

 

Total

10,713

12,846

1,877,957

2,477,613

22,86,33,942

37,02,59,874

* Included Sind in 1920-21 only       ?Includes Baluchistan in 1921-21 only.
The number of Co operative Societies has more than doubled during the decade, which opened with 47,503 societies and closed with over 100,000, while the number of members of primary societies increased from 1,752,904 to 4,308,262 of whom more than two thirds are agricultural. Five states which did not appear at all in the statements of 1920-21 have                      

been added to the returns of 1931-31, viz, Cochin, Gwalior, Indore, Jammu and Kashmir and Travancor. It will be seen therefore that inspite of the decline at the end of the decade into a condition of low prices, trade depression non co-operation and rebellion, this time in Burma, similar to that with which the decade opened if not worse, there still remained at its close many of the economic benefits accumulated during the interval, though they are subject to the greatly enhanced liability of the additional population of approximately 34 millions to the propagation of which the prosperous years had so greatly contributed.

 

Province or States

Total No. Of Societies

No. Of members (primary societies)

1920-21

1930-31

1920-21

1930-31

India

47,503

106,166

1,52,904

4,308,262

British provinces

43,366

90,064

1,600,476

3,681,300

Ajmer Merwara

522

654

17,296

18,608

Assam

560

1,413

28,084

69,569

Bengal

6,366

23,614

232,001

760,812

Bihar & Orissa

3,580

9,404

107,514

254,462

Bombay

2,956

5,896

265,629

572,669

Burma

4,888

2,972

125,318

85,741

C.P. & Berar

5,011

4,109

79,638

76,615

Coorg

142

253

6,565

14,037

Delhi

103

275

2,011

7,795

Hyderabad (administrative area)

5

18

205

6,173

Madras

6,287

14,88

395,284

979,745

N.W.F.P

--

25

--

7,722

Punjab

8,453

20,698

230,311

679,616

United Province

4,493

5,623

110,620

147,736

States:

4,137

16,102

152,428

626,962

Baroda

509

1,047

16,932

37,321

Bhopal

691

1,189

10,446

20,611

Cochin

--

210

--

24,328

Gwalior

--

4,01

--

70,307

Hyderabad

1,437

2,157

35,293

53,120

Indore

--

506

--

13,366

Kashmir

--

2,899

--

54,222

Mysore

1,500

2,213

89,757

134,428

Travancore

--

1,810

--

219,259

 

Province or States

Share capital paid up

Loans and deposits held at the end of the year(in thousands of rupees)

Reserve and other funds

Total

1920-21

1930-31

1920-21

1930-31

1920-21

1930-31

1920-21

1930-31

India

4,05,25

12,40,83

20,23,02

69,18,27

2,14,66

10,32,12

26,42,93

91,91,22

British provinces

3,53,59

10,60,16

18,8,90

63,92,31

1,99,40

9,07,08

24,40,89

83,59,56

Ajmer Merwara

704

6,73

32,58

30,90

2,85

9,67

42,47

47,30

Assam

236

8,09

12,17

59,94

2,31

10,01

16,84

78,04

Bengal

4,228

1,98,92

2,64,63

12,04,27

26,37

1,59,32

3,33,28

15,62,51

Bihar & Orissa

10,57

56,42

1,02,10

4,77,60

10,27

54,88

1,22,94

5,88,90

Bombay

46,18

1,77,46

2,70,62

11,08,35

 

1,04,91

3,34,57

13,90,72

Burma

55,23

88,78

2,23,25

1,05,19

17,77

75,07

3,06,90

2,69,04

C.P. & Berar

26,49

34,57

2,56,87

4,30,99

28,42

66,17

2,99,50

5,31,73

Coorg

99

2,75

53

5,81

16,14

2,47

212

11,03

Delhi

13

2,59

82

20,37

60

2,11

95

25,07

Hyderabad (administrative area)

19

1,96

11

3,10

--

26

30

5,32

Madras

64,87

2,42,16

4,07,66

14,39,78

?.

1,27,94

4,90,90

18,09,88

N.W.F.P

--

2,08

--

10,44

18,37

43

--

12,95

Punjab

69,52

1,81,15

2,33,03

13,72,21

?

2,50,93

360,54

18,04,29

United Province

27,74

56,51

83,53

1,23,36

57,99

42,91

1,29,58

2,22,78

States:

51,66

1,80,66

1,35,12

5,25,96

18,31

1,25,04

2,02,04

8,31,66

Baroda

1,85

5,80

21,08

59,45

2,78

9,69

25,71

74,94

Bhopal

29

1,31

11,23

14,90

18

8,36

11,70

24,57

Cochin

--

3,03

--

15,15

--

3,06

--

21,24

Gwalior

--

15,03

--

56,06

--

20,53

--

91,62

Hyderabad

15,17

45,41

65,91

1,39,62

5,36

23,12

86,44

2,08,15

Indore

--

3,51

--

37,79

--

13,46

--

54,76

Kashmir

--

24,42

--

56,74

--

16,57

--

97,73

Mysore

34,35

48,89

36,90

1,16,34

6,94

24,09

8,19

1,89,32

Travancore

--

33,26

--

29,91

--

6,16

--

69,33

 Section III: - Provincial distribution and variation

   9.   Ajmer Merwara is a small province with an area a little less than that of Co. cork or a little more than that of Devon shire and a population of little more than of all Connaught or of Midlothian. It is administered by commissioner under the Agent to the Governor general in India for Rajputana, by the states of which it is entirely surrounded, and consists of the city and sub division of Ajmer, the adjacent but detached sub-division of Kekri, and the tahsils of Merwara, 

Variation of Population Percent

 

Area in sq. miles

Population

Density

1881-1891

1891-1901

1901-1911

1911-1921

1921-1931

1881-1931

Ajmer Merwara

2,711

560,292

207

+17.7

-12.1

+5.1

-1.2

+13.1

+21.6

Ajmer & Kekri

2,070

423,918

205

+17.6

-13.0

+3.5

-0.4

+11.9

+18.0

Ajmer City

17

119,524

7,031

+41.3

+7.3

+16.8

+31.7

+5.3

+145.3

Merwara

641

136,374

213

+18.3

-8.8

+10.6

-3.9

+17.2

+34.4

the ancient domain of the Mers, as well as small detached areas which are included in one or other of these units. The population, though the highest yet recorded, only exceeds that of 1891 by less than 18,000 persons. The present census shows an actual increase of 13.1 % for the decade, which probably represents a natural increase of 16.6 percent since the 1921 population was swollen by the Khwaja Sahib's Urs. The agricultural produce of Ajmer and Merwara is not enough to support its population and some 360,000 maunds of grain are imported annually. Railway workshops in Ajmer employ many hands.

   10.   Of the Andaman and Nicobar islands, which form the charge of a chief Commissioner directly under the Governments of India, the islands of Great Andaman are in the process of development from a penal to free settlement, the aboriginal population being far on the road to extinction. The density of the Andamans is 7.66.

Administrative and Natural Division

Area in sq. Miles

Population

Density

Variation of population Percent

1881-91

1891-01

1901-11

1911-21

1921-31

1901-31

Andman & Nicobar Island

3,148

29,468

9.3

--

--

+7.8

+2.4

+8.8

+19.5

Andamans

2,508

19,223

7.66

+6.7

+16.2

-2.7

+1.0

+7.9

+6.0

Nicobars

635

10,240

16.1

--

--

+35.4

+5.1

+10.4

+57.3

Sentinel island and little Andaman are still inhabited by Andamanese only, and the Nicobarese except for a few foreigner traders, who come to the islands for pearl shell, bechede-mer, and coconuts, by an Assistant Commissioner and by a few police. The density of the Nicobars is 16.1 persons numerous element in the population of the Andamans has been much reduced on account of the policy of abolishing transportation to the Andamans. The figures of the foreign population, including convicts and ex- convicts, show a steady increase of Burmese and Karens. The climate suits them and they are accustomed to similar surrounding and the indications are that the permanent population of the islands will ultimately be predominately Burmese.

The most striking figures for these islands are those for the indigenous Negrito population which has shown a decrese respectively of 42,30,40 and 41 % at each successive census of this century and a total decrease of over 75% since 1901 alone. If the present rate of decrease continue much longer the Andamanese will be extinct by the end of this century. The census Superintendent in his report is content to damn with faint praise the policy of civilizing the aborigines and the institution of the ?Andaman Home', but that policy, now abandoned, resulted in the space of decades in a greater curtailment of human life than the Andamanese themselves are likely to have effected by their more direct methods in as many centuries. In the Nicobars on the other hand, whence the penal settlement was removed in 1888, there has been an increase of 10.4 percent since 1921 in spite of the deficiency of females, who are only 881 to every 1,000 males. The ratio was 769 females per 1,000 males, and by 40 per mile during the present century. If Nicobarese of tribal religion alone be examined the increase in the sex ratio is from 866 females per 1,000 males in 1921 to 939 in 1931.

   11.   Assam with a present population of a nine and quarter million shows an increase since 1921 of 15.7 %. The decade from the point of view of public health has been "the best in the history of Assam", and the tea industry, which is, of course, the main industry of the province beyond ordinary agriculture, was on the whole in a flourishing condition, starting the decade with a recovery from the depression of 1919-21, booming in 1923 and 1924 and remaining prosperous until the end of 1927, when the present depression began to be felt as a result of foreign competition and over production. The increase in population, in spite of being the highest recorded in Assam, has been mainly due to natural increase and not to an increase by immigration which only formed ten percent of the total. The general economic condition of the cultivator does not seem to have deteriorated up to 1929 in spite of a general tendency to decay on the part of the cottage industries. Up to that year the price of agriculture produce had increased and expenditure on luxuries was found by the Assam Banking Enquiry Committee to have expenditure on marriage and other ceremonies. This had involved increased indebtedness and "the average agriculturist has not learned the importance of saving". The increase in population has extended to the valley, which is the most denesly populated part and but little affected by migrants. The area of the province has been lated part and but is lowest in the Surma Valley, which is the most densily populated part and but little affected by migrants. The area of the province has been slightly extended on the frontier towards Burma, but that extension of area has only accounted for 1.25 % of the increase. The area of Assam is 67,334 sq. miles and its population is 9,247,857 having a mean density of 137 to the square mile. This density, however, is a very variable matter. In the Surma Valley the density is 438 per square mile, and naturally the increase in population has been least in this area. In the Brahmputra valley it is 171, and it is in this area that immigration is most active; in the hills, which generally speaking afford a scanty subsistence to scattered villages, the density is only 39. There are no industrial towns in the province of any size or importance. The Population is of a very mixed character. In Shan tribes mostly Hinduised, and with an aristocracy

Provisional and Natural Division

Area in sq. Miles

Population

Density

Variation of population Percent

1881-91

1891-1901

1901-1911

1911-1921

1921-1931

1901-31

Assam

67.834

9,47,857

137

+6.8

+11.8

+15.2

+13.2

+15.7

+80.3

Brahmputra valley

27,692

4,23,293

171

+10.0

+5.8

+18.7

+24.1

+22.5

+109.8

Surma Valley

7,450

3,262,029

438

+11.5

+5.3

+10.8

+3.3

+7.2

+44.1

Hills

32,192

1,262,535

39

-22.1

+77.7

+18.5

+8.2

+15.6

+105.3

aristocracy of caste Hindus ultimately of foreign extraction but, like the small Muslims population settled in the 17 th century, completely identified with the country and the people of the valley by a residence of many generations. The recent immigrants consist either or tea garden coolies, mostly aboriginals from the Madras Agency tracts, the Central provinces and Chota Nagpur, who take up land and settle down in the country, and of Muslims cultivaors from Maimansingh Districts in Bengal who have of recent years swarmed into the lower districts of the valley and opened up large areas of waste land. Profile breeders and industrious cultivators but unruly and uncomfortable neighbors, these immigrants threaten to swamp entirely the indigenous inhabitants and in the course of two or three decades to change the whole nature, language and religion of the Brahmputra valley and to assimilate it to the Muslims areas of Sylhet, where the population is not Assamese but essentially Bengali, whether Muslims or Hindu. In the other districts of the Surma Valley, the plains part of Cachar, the last stronghold of the Kachari kings and once completely Kachari in character, has become a Bengali colony entirely submerging the indigenous Kachari, who has retained his tribal nationality only in the North Cachar Hills. There as in the intrusion of the plainsmen whether Bengali or Assamese and maintaining their own languages and distinctive cultures and racially belonging for the most part to Burma rather than to India.

   12.   Baluchistan, the most sparsely population of any province of India, occupies an important strategical position between Afghanistan, India and Persia, while the peninsula and immediate hinterland of Gwadar on its south west coast is in the possession of the Sultan of Muscat and excluded from the scope of the Census of India. The province consists of British Baluchistan, of agency territories, of tribal areas and of the States of Kalat and Las Bela; the agency territories are grouped with British Territory for administrative purposes and include four tahsils held on lease

Administrative unit

Area in sq. Miles

Population

Density

Variation of population Percent

1901-11

1911-21

1921-31

1901-31

Baluchistan

134,638

868,617

6

+3.0

-4.2

+8.6

+7.1

British Territory

9,084

136,793

9

+9.3

+1.1

+6.7

+17.7

Agency Territory

37,864

21,491

9

+9.3

+1.1

+6.7

+17.7

Tribal areas

7,280

55,224

8

+1.3

+6.3

+45.5

+56.7

States

80,410

405,109

5

-1.9

-9.8

+6.9

-5.5

Kalat

3,278

342,101

5

-3.6

-8.6

+4.2

-8.2

Las Bela

7,132

63,008

9

+9.1

-17.2

+24.3

+12.3

from the khan of Kalat. British Baluchistan covers 7% only of the total area of the province and contains 16% of the total population, but these figures become 40 and 53 respectively if all the areas under British administration area added to what is strictly British territory. In an area so scattered that the charge of a single enumerator involved the traveling of distance of from 50 to 150 miles, a generally synchronous census was obviously an impossibility, and the regular synchronized census on the standard schedule covered only 200 square miles and a population mostly alien. The difficulties of obtaining an accurate census are further enhanced by the nomadic character of the population, which is constantly moving from one part of the country to another in search of pasturage or work, and by the periodic movements not only of the local population, which is constantly moving from one part of the country to another in search of pasturage or work, and by the periodic movements not only of the local population towards Sind, Afghanistan or Persia in the autumn, but also of foreign nomads from Afghanistan into and through Baluchistan is 6 persons per sq. mile, a little more than Tibet with 4 and about the same as Newfoundland exclusive of Labrador; but this density falls in the Chagai districts to 1 square mile. The decade started with a period of famine resulting from the drought of 1920-21 and although the years 1923-25 were good the later years were afflicted by locusts and the decade as whole was below the usual level of prosperity. As a result of famine and scarcity and of the damage done by the invading sands of the Chagai deserts, which bury and lay waste the cultivated areas to the south and east of them and choke both sources and channels of irrigation, the province lost some thousands of its scanty indigenous population by migration. Prices ruled high until 1931 when they fell to a level phenomenally low. Health was poor and to the disease, which naturally follows famine, conditions were added serious epidemics of cholera, small pox and measles. A general increase of motor traffic has almost caused the disappearance of animal drawn vehicles during the decade, and 132 miles have been added to railways. The population increased by 69,000 of which 39,500 represents a natural increase, but the phenomenal increase of 45.5 percent in the tribal areas is not entirely beyond suspicion, and if the natural population of Baluchistan be alone considered, the 1911 figure has not yet been recovered. The population is far from uniform in character comprising as it does Brahui, Baloch, Lasi and Makrani with their satellite tribes of Loris, Dehwars, Langahs and Naqibs to say nothing of Pathans and Jatts and Persians. The country is of great historical importance and the researches in recent years of sir Aurel Stein indicate that Baluchistan was once a fertile country supporting a large population, where it now offers a scanty subsistence steadily dwindling under the encourage sand.

   13.   Bengal, ninth of the provinces of India is area, is first respect of population. The British districts cover 77,521 521 sq. miles, exclusive of large surfaces river and estuary, and the Bengal states 5,434. To these for census purposes was added Sikkim another 2,818 sq.miles. Thirty sq. miles have been added since 1921 from Bihar and Orissa but changes in calculation of areas have increased the size shown in the tables by an additional 678 sq. miles. The total population returned is 51,087,338 for Bengal (of which 50,114,002 were in British and 93,336 in state territory) and 109,808 for Sikkim , the population of Bengal being more than one sixth of the total for British India. The density in British Bengal is now 646 persons per sq. mile per sq. mile, while that Sikkim is only 39. excluding Calcutta the density of Bengal varies from 2,105 in Howrah district to 43 in the Chittagong Hill Tracts, but by far the greater part of the province has a density is found in many places, Dacca Divisions having a mean density of 935, Munshiganj Sub-divisions of 2,413 and Lohajang thana of 3,228 per sq. mile. The rate of increase of population has been 7.3 % since 1921 and that of Sikkim 34.4%. Cooch Bihar State is one of the few in India that shows a decrease since 1921. This decrease, 0.27 % is entirely Hindu (--4.76%) and is attributed to the expansion of settled cultivation by Muslims which has the effect of driving the Hinduised tribes, Koch, Mech, Poliya, etc., into the foothills or eastwards into Assam a process observed likewise in the adjoining Bengal Districts. It is also suggested that this decrease is partly due to changes in social custom, such as the abandonment of widow remarriage as part of a campaign of social elevation and to changes in the environment unfavorable to pre existing adaptations. Tripura state on the other hand, with only 93 persons to the sq. mile has experienced an increase of 25.6% and the thinly populated Chittagong Hill tracts one of 22.9%. Conditions during the decade from the economic standpoint are described as having been "not entirely unsatisfactory" Harvests have been generally good and prices high until 1929, though there have been severe floods in three years, some cyclones and an earth quake. Wages were high till 1930, but their high level was of little benefit to middle class families with fixed incomes,

Province or state

Area in sq. Miles

Population

Density

Variation of population Percent

1881-91

1891-1901

1901-1911

1911-1921

1921-1931

1881-1931

Bengal

82,955

51,087,388

616

+7.5

+7.7

+8.0

+2.8

+7.8

+38.0

British districts

77,521

50,114,002

646

+7.6

+7.8

+7.9

+2.7

+7.3

+38.0

Cooch behar

1,138

590,886

448

-3.9

-2.1

+4.6

-0.1

-0.3

-1.9

Tripura

4,116

382,450

93

+43.7

+26.1

+32.5

+32.6

+25.6

+299.9

Sikkim

2,818

109,808

39

?

+93.8

+49.0

-7.1

+34.4*

+260.5

and it was the skilled workman who reaped the most benefit. In industry cotton mills have been prosperous throughout, and jute until 1929; tea was prosperous till 1927; coal has not been prosperous. Throughout Bengal there seems to have been a general rise in the standard of living, not shown in an improved or more expensive diet, though it is reported that the need for a better-balanced dietary is indicated by the fact that an ordinary cultivator is found to improve and gain weight on prison fare, but in minor amenities such as umbrellas and shoes, shirts and coats "now worn by thousands who would never have dreamt of wearing then ten years ago", while the hurricane lantern, is almost universally displacing the indigenous oil lamp. In some areas union boards are taking advantage of their powers to tax the union for schemes of village improvement such as the clearing of jungle, maintenance of roads and the excavation of tanks or wells. On the other hand increased earnings have not led to any reduction of the indebtedness of the riot or laborer. The average debt of an agricultural family seems to be about Rs. 180 and that of a non-agricultural one perhaps a little more, while the average debt of the total population is about Rs. 166 per households. The debts of members of co-operative societies have increased by 3.5% to which borrowing to forestall the Sarda Act has largely contributed. In an interesting examination of the population question printed as an appendix to this chapter the Census Superintendent reaches the conclusion that Bengal might have a population of some 53 millions in 1941, and that the maximum population will be from 68 to 74 millions; that the Hindu population has passed the point at which the rate of increase accelerates in successive decades and is approaching a stationary population, whereas the Muslim population has not yet progressed so far along its present cycle of growth but will ultimately be to the Hindu as 4 to 3; and that Bengal could support at the present standards of living nearly double its present population.

   14.   Bihar and Orissa has a heterogeneous population of 42,329,583 in an area of 111,702 sq. miles giving a mean density of 379 per sq. mile, of which 28,648,sq. miles consist of feudatory States which contain more than 4� millions of the population. The increase of the province has been 11.5% since 1921. The population falls naturally into three areas which do not correspond to its administrative divisions, that is into Bihar (exclusive of the Santal Parganas), the Chota Nagpur plateau together with the Santal Parganas and the Feudatory States, and Orissa proper. The mean density gives little indication of its great variation, which is as high as 969 persons per sq. miles in the Muzzaffarpur district of Bihar, with a density of 1,073 if calculated on cultivatable area, and as low as 43 in the Feudatory State of Rairakhol. In previous decades the number of emigrants has very greatly exceeded the number of immigrants. This excess has been considerably reduced during the past ten years.

Locality

Area in sq. miles

Population

Density

Variation of the population percent

1881-91

1891-01

1901-11

1911-21

1921-31

1881-1931

Bihar & Orissa

111,02

42,329,583

379

+7.5

+1.8

+5.1

-1.2

+11.5

+26.8

Bihar (excluding santil paraganas)

36,877

23,676,028

642

+4.7

-1.3

+1.5

-1.3

+9.7

+13.6

Orissa (ex. Angul and sambalpur)

8,210

4,202,461

512

+6.8

+7.1

+0.9

-4.6

+5.2

+15.8

Chota Nagpur with santal paragansa, Angul and Sambalpur

37,96

9,799

258

+10.2

+5.2

+11.8

-0.1

+16.4

+50.6

Feudatory states

28,648

4,652,007

162

+25.6

+9.5

+19.0

+0.4

+17.5

+93.0

But these conditions have been confined to British territory, for in the states there has been in the past an excess of immigrants over emigrants which has been similarly reduced during the past decade. The public health has been exceptionally good throughout he decade, mortality from plague having decreased by about 73% and from cholera by about 30%. At the same time, though the birth rate has fallen from 41 per mile to 36.5, the survival rate has more than doubled. Earners profited by a general decline in the cost of living, while cultivators also benefited during the greater part of the decade not only by a succession of good harvests but by the fact that the prices of food grains retained a high level after other prices had fallen. There have been heavy investment in post office 5 year cash certificates; in the Pos office savings bank the number of depositors has rises since 1921 by 27.8% and the value of the deposits by 102%. The standard of comfort has everywhere risen among the labouring classes, while an outstanding change in diet is the development of tea drinking. It has already been pointed out that the population of this province is heterogeneous. That of Bihar is not markedly dissimilar to the population of the east of the United Provinces on the one hand or the west of Bengal on the other, between the populations of which it forms a natural link, and may be regarded as normal Hindustani speaking population of the Ganges Valley. In Orissa proper the population is more nearly allied to that of lower Bengal, but has a distinctive culture of its own. The chota Nagpur Plateau and the Santal Paraganas are primarily the habitat of comparatively Munda speaking tribes and of others speaking Dravidian languages but closely allied to them in race. Sambalpur and Angul are not dissimilar and the inhabitants of the Feudatory States are also of the same kind, though Oriya replaces Hindi on the southern slopes of the plateau as the medium of communication with the more civilized world.

   15.  Bombay in 1921 included the area, which in 1931 was enumerated as the western India states agency, and on this occasion therefore its area was reduced to 151,593 square miles (excluding Aden), having a population of 26,347,519 and a mean density of 14. Even with this reduction Bombay remains larger than any province except Burma and Madras. It comprises not only the British districts of the Bombay presidency proper, but the Bombay states and agencies and clued the whole of the Aden settlement and Perim, but not the Aden Protectorate. An entirely separate volume (IX) deals with the cities of the Bombay Presidency, which is far ahead of any other province in India in the proportion of its urban to rural population, if we exclude Delhi and Ajmer Merwara, where the principal until of the province is itself a town.

Locality

Area in sq. miles

Population

Density

Variation of the population percent

1881-91

1891-01

1901-11

1911-21

1921-31

1881-1931

Bombay province

151,673

26,398,997

174

+15.02

-3.6

+6.2

-1.2

+13.7

+32.0

Sind

46,378

3,887,070

84

+19.0

+11.7

+9.4

-6.7

+18.5

+60.8

Presidency

77,221

17,992,053

233

+13.7

-4.2

+5.3

-0.8

+12.4

+27.9

Bombay city

24

1,161,383

48,391

+6.3

-5.6

+26.2

+20.1

-1.2

+50.2

Bombay state

27,994

4,468,396

160

+17.6

-12.0

+7.0

+0.1

+15.5

+28.2

Aden

80

51,478

643

+26.4

-0.2

+5.0

+22.4

-8.9

+47.7

In Bombay city itself the population has actually fallen since 1921, partly probably because the economic depression which had set in by the census of 1931had driven back to their homes the countrymen who normally come down to Bombay to work during the cold whether and partly no doubt owing to suburban expansion, but every other unit in the confines of the Presidency proper has increased in population during the decade and the general rate of increase, 13.7%, is well above that of India as a whole. In the case of the cities the increase was probably greater than that actually shown, since the municipal authorities did not in all cases co ? operate whole-heartedly, while some were definitely obstructive. In Surat, Kaira, Villeparle and Broach at any rate the enumeration was probably defective, and at Ahmedabad it was made impossible to carry it out at all in many parts of the city. For that town therefore an estimate has been made of the numbers not enumerated and added to the actual returns for the purposes of all tables in which details by religion, age, etc, are not required. Aden alone has fallen while the Bombay state and even more, Sind have increased at a higher rate than the province as a whole, though Sind has been visited by disastrous floods and in 1929-30 revenue to the extent of Rs.57, 71,940 had to be remitted on account of damage by locusts. In marked contrast to all the decades since 1891 no district has suffered from a single very bad season during the whole period under review. Five seasons of the ten were good and five were moderate, and the fact that the prices of food grains fell more slowly than most others while cotton remained exceptionally high was of great benefit to the cultivator. At the same time wages and the demand for labour showed a tendency to rise rather than to fall until 1930, and then did not fall proportionately to the drop in prices. In the towns the decade was also one of prosperity until 1927-28, and in the earlier half of the decade urban labour seems to have reached an unprecedented standard of comfort, but at the end of the period the trade depression, aggravated by the civil disobedience movement, caused much unemployment and discomfort.

   16.   The census of Burma was taken on February 24 th two days earlier than that of India proper on account of local festivals which made the 26 th an inconvenient date. Though only eighth in order of population figures, Burma is by far the largest of the provinces of the Indian Empire, having an area of 261,610 sq. miles, of which 233,492 were covered by the census operations of 1931.The population censused is 14,667,146 having increased by 11% since 1921, part of which increase as near as can be estimated 320,000* persons, is due to immigration from India. The figures in the marginal table give the variation by "natural" divisions, but these divisions are administrative and racial

Locality

Area in sq. miles

Population

Density

Variation of the population percent

1891-1901

1901-11

1911-1921

1921-1931

1891-1931

Burma

233,492

14,667,146

63

+35.9

+15.5

+9.1

+11.0

+89.9

Burman

156,297

12,856,207

82

+19.5

+14.6

+9.

+11.

+67.8

Chin

12,278

192,665

16

?

+38.9

-4.9

+20.6

+59.2*

Salween

7,101

111,947

16

?

+31.9

+3.5

-0.8

+35.5*

Shan

57,816

1,506,337

26

?

+18.7

+6.3

+5.1

+32.6*

*1901-1931

rather than geographical. Thus the Burman division represents the plains districts of administratered Burma in which the population is primarily (94%) Burmese, though it includes the remnants of the Mons of Pegu, the main bulk of the Karens, who appear also in the Salween and Shan divisions in smaller numbers, and a considerable share of the total number of Chins, Kachins and other indigenous races. It contains nearly all the Chinese other than Yunnanse, that is to say almost two thirds of the total, and practically all the other foreigner Indo-Burmese population. The Chin division contains for practical purpose Chins and no one else. The Salween division, consisting as it does primarily of the Karenni, the only area in Burma with the status of an Indian State, has a population purely Karen and Tai. The shan division, constituted by good many Karens and Barmans, almost all the Yunnanese (who make up more than a third of the total Chinese in Burma), almost the whole of the Palaung War branch of the Mon Khmel race, many Kachins, about half the other indigenous decade has been considerable and has added about 10,000 to the population of the Northern Shan States, while Indians, largely Gurkhas from Nepal, have added another 11,000 to the Northern and 5,000 to the southern Shan States. In the salween division the population of the Karenni states dereased, and the increase in the rest of that division was largely due to the mines in Salween District. The chin division has increased not only by the natural growth during a prosperous decade but by the inclusion of previously unadministered country on the Assam border. As far as climate conditions went the decade was normal and floods and droughts were confined to small areas and involved no widespread calamities comparable with those which befell some parts of India, though the towns of Pegu was destroyed by a disastrous earthquake which did damage elsewhere as well. Burma grows more rice than her population consumes, and although cultivable land is not readily capable of extension the area under irrigation was extended by some 317,000 acres during the decade. Industrial expansion, particularly in the production of oil, has been important in some districts and railways have extended by 434 miles. There has been some increase in mining activity in spite of the slump in silver and baser metals. The fall in the price of paddy was perhaps the most serious features of the decade economically. The marginal table shows the wholesaleThe out break coincided, of course, with the census, but luckily the preliminary enumeration could everywhere be completed in undisturbed conditions except in Tharrawaddy District and a small part of Pegu, where there was inevitably some under enumeration. The rebellion spread to Henzada before the final enumeration, but the preliminary enumeration had already been completed

 

Year

Price in rupees per 100 baskets (46 lbs)

1921

152

1922

185

1923

178

1924

193

1925

178

1926

185

1927

181

1928

169

1929

159

1930

138

1931

77

 

*Vide chapter I of Burma Census Report, 1931, paragraph 14


    17.   The central provinces and Berar, an area totaling 131,095 square miles, include not only the British districts, 82,153 sq. miles, and the fifteen states of the central provinces, 31,175 sq. miles, but the four districts of Berar 17,767 which are leased in perpetuity from H.E.H. the Nizam. The total area of the province according to the latest revision is 133,050 sq. miles, but this figure was obtained too late for use in the tables. The total population is 17,990,937 with a mean density of 137 per sq. miles still covered by forest. The highest density is that of the Katghora Tahsil which has 492 persons to the sq. mile, and the lowest that of the Azhiri Zamindari with only 16. Famines and epidemics have been responsible for exceptional fluctuations in the past, and the central province more than any other are marked by recurring alternations between good and bad years.

Locality

Area in sq. miles

Population

Density

Variation of the population percent

1881-91

1891-01

1901-11

1911-21

1921-31

1881-31

Central province and berar

131,095

17,990,93

137

+10.7

-7.0

+17.9

-0.3

+12.6

+35.0

British districts

82,153

12,065,885

147

+9.5

-9.2

+17.8

-0.2

+11.3

+30.2

Berar

17,767

3,441,838

194

+8.4

-5.0

+11.0

+0.6

+11.9

+28.8

C.P. states

31,15

2,483,214

80

+23.4

-4.8

+29.8

-2.4

+20.1

+79.0

The decade under review opened in conditions of scarcity and high prices, while the effect of the influenza epidemic upon women of the child bearing ages can be traced in certain age groups at the present census. Up to the end of 1921 public health was bad. Cholera, plague and malaria caused exceptional mortality. In 1922 however the satisfactory monsoons of that and the previous year reduced the death rate from 44 to 29, though the birth rate also fell from 38 to 36 per 1,000. Good monsoons and healthy years continued until 1926-2, which was marked by serious floods, and 1927-28 saw the beginning of the decline in prosperity. Wheat was attacked by rust and more than half of the crop was lost in the northern districts of the province in that year and health deteriorated. The following year brought the recurrence of non co operation, agrarian agitation and general depression, another unsatisfactory agricultural year in the north of the province, and much unhealthiness from cholera, plague, small pox, influenza and Malaria. On the whole, however, the intervening prosperity more than balanced the depression at either end of the decade. The net area cropped increased from 23,585,215 acres to 25,364,36 ; the addition of a thousand miles of irrigation channels added nearly a hundred thousand acres of irrigated land; a thousand miles of metalled road were added to the existing metalled roads, and many new bridges and 300 miles of railway. It is significant of the connection between prosperity and population that the growth of the latter was very small in the north of the province which suffered three very bad years at the end of the decade. Elsewhere, as in other provinces, the highest rate of increase was in the most thinly populated areas. The infant mortality rate appears to be higher in the central provinces than in India as a whole or in most other parts of India, but the rate of increase at this census has been 12.6% for the province. Both the natural features and the population are very varied. The Narbada valley in the north is a wheat growing tract; the Maratha plain in the west and the Chhatishgarh plain in the east are rice growing areas; the central plateau and the Chota Nagpur plateau in the north east like the states of Bastar and Kanker and the district of Chanda in the south are largely forest. In the open country Marathi is the language of the west and Hindi of the east, but the forest tribes speak Dravidian or Munda languages. In Bastar State, the remotest part of the province, there has been much increase in communication, but the Administrator reports that the increase in traffic is leading to an increases in the consumption of opium and the case of one tahsil to the substitution for opium of the much more pernicious mercury.

   18.   Coorg, smallest after Delhi of the province of India, is the only one which showed a decrease of population at the census of 1931. It is administered by a chief commissioner , who combine this office with that of Resident in Mysore, and has a council of 15 elected and 5 nominated members. Its area is 1,593 sq. miles with a population of 163,327,511 less that is than in 1921, and a density of 103 persons per sq. mile. The decrease in population is probably greater than the figures indicate, since there has been a decrease of about 5,000 persons in the natural population most of which is balanced by an increase in immigrants more apparent than real, since it consists mostly of laborers who leave the province for their homes in March. In 1921 the census fell earlier before the exodus had started. The vital statistics showed an excess in deaths over births of 14,000, thought

Locality

Area in sq. miles

Population

Density

Variation of the population percent

1881-91

1891-01

1901-11

1911-21

1921-31

1881-31

Coorg

1,593

163,327

103

-2.9

+4.4

-3.1

-6.4

-0.3

-8.4

it is stated of the average individual in coorg that his desire "appears to be to have as many children as possible, irrespective of his economic position". Coffee plantations on an important scale as well as cardmom plantations on the of rubber and agave are being abandoned, but the staple crop is rice of which the province produces more than it consumes. Both for rice and coffee the decade was favorable except for the heavy floods in 1924. The fall in rice prices, stedly till 1929, at the end of the decade caused paddy to be sold at exceedingly low rates and the area under rice cultivation to decrease from 84,587 to 82,822 acres. Urban population has increased and a general increase in the number of occupied houses points to the gradual dissolution of the joint family system prevalent in Coorg.

   19.   Delhi is the smallest and most recently constituted of the province of India. It came into being as a province on the laying of the foundation stone of New Delhi by His Majesty the king Emperor in December 1911, and as a result of the establishment there of the imperial capital its growth has been phenomenal. It is of course primarily an urban unit and the total area of the

Locality

Area in sq. miles

Population

Density

Variation of the population percent

1881-91

1891-01

1901-11

1911-21

1921-31

1881-31

Delhi province

673.0

636,246

1,110

+6

+9

+2

+18

+30

+81

Urban

65.5

447,442

6,835

+11

+1

+12

+31

+47

+158

Old Delhi municipality

5.96

347,539

58,273

+11

+9

+11

+8

+40

+104

New Delhi

48.3

73,653

1,524

..

?

..

..

+95

?

Rural

507.5

188,804

372

+2

+9

-8

+2

+3

+6

province is only 573 sq. miles, but the population is 636,246 persons with a mean density of 1,110 persons per sq. mile. This density varies from 58,23 persons per sq. mile in old Delhi municipality to 372 in the rural area, where the increase during the decade has been only 3% as compared with 30.3% for the province as a whole. This rapid increase is due to the abnormal growth of a newly established capital, and is very largely due to immigration, since the gross balance of migration in Delhi's favour is 189,594 persons, of which the census Superintendent regards 111,775 as the actual net increase by migration during the decade since 1921. This growth in population has outstripped the rapid building of houses and in the urban area the density per 100 houses has increased from 410 in 1921 to 454 in 1931. The censused population of the urban areas however (447,442) probably falls to about 330,000 in the hot weather, which is likely to be no more and possibly even less than its permanent population at the height of its importance in the reign of Shahjahan.

   20.  Madras Covering 142,277 sq. miles populated by 46,740,107 persons, is second among the major provinces in area, third in population and fifth in density (329), but in rate of increase seventh exceeding only Bengal and the United Provinces the higher population figure of which it is fast overhauling. Its rate of increase for whole Indian Empire. The total irrigated area has increased by some 66,000 acres, that is by 0.90 % only, but important new works are projected. The decrease in the value of the crops raised has been nearly 46% which indicates not a fall in the quantity of the crop but in the level of prices. At the same time possibilities of agriculture on present methods have more or less reached a maximum and the Presidency can no longer feed itself. The decade was healthy and not only has it been free from epidemics but the skilled research of colonel Russel, the director of public health, has made it possible to cope with epidemics when they arise, and in the case of cholera to predict their occurrence and so to forestall their virulence. Cholera, which is endemic in the south of the presidency, has proved to have a six year cycle. The vital statistics of Madras are worthy of reference since this province is the only one whose registration of birth and death approaches anything like a satisfactory standard. Even so in 1930 some 62,000 unregistered births and 20,000 unregistered deaths were detected by inspecting officers in the presidency. In some parts of Madras emigration takes place on a larger scale to Assam, Burma, Ceylon and Malaya, the annual loss being some 13,000 and though the decline in the planting industry has resulted in large numbers of from Burma. As in the accuracy of her vital statistics, Madras is ahead of other provinces in the matter of birth control. A tendency is observed by the census superintendent for men at any rate to marry later, and contraceptive methods are advocated by influential persons and widely advertised in the press. The census Superintendent writes " ten years should show a marked growth in their popularity. Books on the subject are to be found in any bookstall or publisher's list and that they can fail to exert some influence". He adds, as a portent, that contraception of a crude kind has been observed among the Goundans of Salem to prevent large families, the fragmentation of holding and the weakening of the joint family system.

The external boundaries have not altered. Internally there have been some changes between districts the most important of which has been the re absorption in the three neighboring plains districts of the agency division, a hilly tract inhabited by Khonds, Sawaras, and similar hill tribes and quite alien to the plains districts which have absorbed it.

Provinces and natural div.

Area in sq. miles

Population

Density

Variation of the population percent

1891-01

1901-11

1911-21

1921-31

1891-31

Madras

142,27

46,740,107

329

+7.2

+8.3

+2.2

+10.4

+81.1

Agency

19,869

1,763,65

89

+2.4

+16.7

-4.0

+16.5

+33.6

East coast North

31,532

12,175,530

386

+8.8

+9.8

+3.2

+12.2

+38.5

East coast Central

32,020

13,349,980

417

+8.9

+7.9

+3.0

+11.3

+34.7

East coast South

22,102

10,380,774

470

+5.6

+8.4

+3.0

+5.2

+24.0

West Coast

10,798

5,082,281

471

+6.3

+7.1

+3.3

+13.5

+33.5

Deccan*

25,954

3,994,543

154

+5.5

+3.5

-3.7

+10.3

+16.0

*Excluding states

The mean density is 329 but density varies greatly in different areas being only 329 but density varies greatly in different areas being only 89 persons to the square mile in the agency tracts and 471 on the west coast, though one districts the plains of Godavari East, on the coromandel coast reaches a higher density (660) than Malabar itself with 610. There is a greater tendency to city life in Madras than in any major province but Bombay, but the towns are far less industrial in character than that of the latter province. Nevertheless signs of industrial development are appearing and cotton mills are springing up at small country centers supplied by the cotton growing areas they adjoin. Thus Pollachi, a small town in Coimbatore district, had six mills in 1921 but thirty in 1931. Cheap power from water is a possibility and the use of electricity is steadily advancing in popularity, as the decade has seen many towns with oil lamps or no lamps adopt electric lighting and fans. The standard of living is rising and in ten years the villager has "become accustomed to and takes as necessities what formerly were rather unlooked for luxuries. The great advance in communications which the motor but and car has brought has contributed enormously to widening horizons"

    21.   The northwest Frontier Province has an area of 36,356 sq. miles with a population of 4,684,364 and a mean density of 129 per sq. mile, but of this area 22,838 sq. miles constitute the Trans frontier agencies, of the population of which 2,259,288 (density99) and leaving 2,425,076 persons in the five regularly administered districts with an area of 13,518 sq. square miles and a mean density of 179, an area a little greater than that of Holland with a population a little less than that of Denmark. Since 1921 the Malandri tract, 20 sq. miles, has been added to the administered from the unadministered area and 4 sq. miles have been transferred from Kohat District to the former. Otherwise there has been no territorial change. The density of population in the administered areas exclusive of urban population varies according to the combined factor of rainfall

Locality

Area in sq. miles

Population

Density

Variation of the population percent

1881-91

1891-01

1901-11

1911-21

1921-31

1881-31

N.W.F.P

36,356

4,684,364

129

?

?.

+79.9

+32.9

-7.7

+120.4

Administered area

13,518