Controversy surrounds the last census in the Jaffna district, with Tamil political leaders now saying that it is incorrect. The problem however has arisen as the census indicates a drastic decline in the Tamil population in the country starting from Jaffna.
The census conducted by the Sri Lankan Department of Census and Statistics shows the Jaffna District as having a 583,071 population in 2012 compared to 734,474 persons in 1981. This is 151,403 persons less.
Former SL government agent of the Jaffna district and now the additional secretary to the president, Mrs. Emelda Sukumar, who was a key player in getting the 2011 Jaffna district statistics published, told that ‘to a certain extent’ there is an inaccuracy in the statistics with regard to the population because while the survey was conducted people were travelling ‘in search of employment,’ ‘looking for schools for their children in places far away from their homes’ and ‘better shelter elsewhere in the country.’