Census India 1931: The Population Problem in Gwalior

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This article is an extract from


Report by

J. H. HUTTON, C.I.E., D.Sc., F.A.S.B.,

Corresponding Member of the Anthropologische Gesselschaft of Vienna.

Delhi: Manager of Publications


(Hutton was the Census Commissioner for India)

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The Population Problem in Gwalior

Gwalior State, the dominion of the Scindia family, about the size of the Irish Free State, is the sixth largest of the Indian States in area and fifth in population. having 3.523,070 inhabitants in an area of 26,367 sq. miles, a density of 134.

Thirty-two square miles of area, the status of which is in dispute, have been excluded at this census and 16 square miles not before included have been added, but the total thus arrived at is probably not quite accurate and the latest survey estimate of the area of Gwalior State is 395 sq.miles less than the area here quoted, but the figure has not yet been verified by the State. The increase in population since 1921 has been 10 3% in spite of an adverse migration balance of about -15,000. The State is not a compact area but consists of one large block of contiguous parganas and a number of smaller outlying ones.


The Census Com- missioner for the State corn pares the population of India in general and Gwalior in particular to Penelope's web, alternately woven and unpicked; he regards the fluctuation at alternate decades as symptomatic of the normal growth of the population.

He concludes that the comparative freedom of the decade from scarcity and epidemics has kept the mortality rate down to normal and that the population which survived the influenza epidemic of the previous decade had a superior biological equipment and a higher survival rate which have been responsible for the exceptional increase experienced.

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