The CPM's Politburo has demanded that Prime Minister Narendra Modi announce the deferment of census operations and abandonment of the National Population Register (NPR) in the wake of the spread of coronavirus.
Modi is on Thursday scheduled to address the nation on the situation arising out of the coronavirus outbreak and the efforts to combat it, the Prime Minister's Office said on Wednesday.
"Given the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic and the need for taking precautions such as social distancing, the Politburo of the CPI(M) is of the firm opinion that the NPR enumeration slated to begin from April 1 must be abandoned," a statement from the party said.
It said the government and all its agencies must "single-mindedly" focus on controlling the pandemic and meeting the consequent challenges threatening people's health and livelihood.
"Already 13 state governments declared their opposition to the NPR/NRC process. The census operations should be deferred till the situation normalises. PB calls upon the Prime Minister to make this announcement in his much advertised address to the nation today, March 19 at 8 pm," the statement from the party said.