President Pranab Mukherjee Friday emphasised on the need for authenticity in the collection of statistics as its analysis plays a key role in shaping national policies.
“The efficacy of our policies, especially in the social sector, hinges on the quality of data collected by different government agencies. Good policies call for good data standards,” he said
The President said that the Collection of Statistics Act, 2008, seeks to facilitate the collection of data on several socio-economic and other parameters. It is the collective responsibility of the citizens and the seekers of information under this Act to ensure that correct and adequate statistics are furnished, he said.
“Enhanced capability of analysing large data had a positive act in our ability to formulate effective public policies as well improving transparency to ensure last mile connectivity,” Mukherjee told the 48th Convocation of the Indian Statistical Institute (ISI) here.
Mukherjee said that improved ability to analyse data had led to an improvement in weather forecasting systems. He said data mining and statistical techniques had been used to initiate counter terrorism programmes.
The President expressed happiness that the Institute was involved in developing technologies in areas of cryptology and information security which have a far reaching impact on national security policies. He also praised the institute for making efforts “to introduce statistical systems for estimation and control of fake Indian currency notes”.
The President said that the country had realised a lot of what its people had aspired for at the time of Independence and is on way to attaining global leadership.
“As a happy coincidence, the calendar of 2014 exactly matches with that of 1947 — the year we started our tryst with destiny. “There was a lot of hope then and we have been successful to a great extent in realising them. We are today in the throes of attaining global leadership,” he said.
Recalling his own association with the Institute, Mukherjee said that visiting it again was like a homecoming for him as he had been the chairman of the council for eight years. He said that P C Mahalanobis, who had laid the foundation of the Institute, had a wonderful vision about the potential of statistics.
Defence Minister A K Antony, who is the current chairman of the Institute, said that the evolution of ISI had opened new horizons in the discipline of statistics.