In a major restructuring move, the Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation (MOSPI) has decided to merge the Central Statistics Office (CSO) and the National Sample Survey Office (NSSO) into National Statistical Office (NSO).
In an order issued on 23 May, MOSPI said that the decision was taken "In order to streamline and strengthen the present nodal function of MOSPI with respect to Indian official statistics system and bring in more synergy by integrating its administrative functions within the ministry."
The restructuring comes in line with the National Policy on Official Statistics proposed last year, which suggests the discontinuation of the role of the Chief Statistician of India as secretary to the National Statistical Commission (NSC) and treating CSO and NSSO as a single entity called the NSSO.
The proposed combined entity will be headed by MOSPI secretary, with various divisions reporting to the Secretary through Director Generals (Dgs).
The CSO headed by a DG brings out macro economic data like economic (GDP) growth data, industrial production and inflation, while the NSSO conducts large-scale surveys and brings out reports on health, education, household expenditure and other social and economic indicators.
The NSSO and the CSO were functioning independently up till now.
The National Policy on Official Statistics is based on the decision of the Union Cabinet in 2005 (UPA government tenure) following the recommendations of the Rangarajan Commission, which reviewed the Indian Statistical System in 2001.