Religion Census: Hindus Comprise 79.8% of India’s Population

Indian Muslims have registered 0.8% growth to touch 17.22 crore between 2001 and 2011, according to religion census.

Published
India
2 min read
The Muslim community has registered 0.8% growth between 2001 and 2011. (Photo: iStockphoto)

The Indian Muslim community is growing faster, albeit marginally, than the population of other religions in India. That is what a 2011 religion census, released on Tuesday by the Registrar General and Census Commissioner, says. The calculation was done with the 2011 numbers when the total population was 121.09 crore.

The report says that the Muslim community has registered a moderate 0.8% growth to touch 17.22 crore in the 10 year period between 2001 and 2011. This amounts to 14.2% of the total population.

The Hindu population showed a decline of 0.7% at 96.63 crore during the period. This constitutes 79.8% of the population. This is the first time the Hindu population in the country has fallen below 80%.

While the census figures on religion was released on Tuesday, more than four years after compilation of the data, the caste census data is yet to be made public. Data on the socio-economic status of the population was released on July 3.

Who Stands Where: 2011 Religion Census

  • Hindus: 96.63 crore (79.8%)
  • Muslims: 17.22 crore (14.2%)
  • Christians: 2.78 crore (2.3%)
  • Sikhs: 2.08 crore (1.7%)
  • Buddhists: 0.84 crore (0.7%)
  • Jains: 0.45 crore (0.4%)
  • Other religions and persuasions (ORP): 0.79 crore (0.7%)
  • Religions not stated: 0.29 crore (0.2%)

What do the Numbers Indicate?

 The population growth among Indian Muslims amounts to 14.2% of the total population in 2011. (Photo: iStockphoto)
The population growth among Indian Muslims amounts to 14.2% of the total population in 2011. (Photo: iStockphoto)
  • The proportion of Muslims to the total population of the country has increased by 0.8 Percentage Point (PP) in 2011.
  • The proportion of Hindus to the total population of the country in 2011 has declined by 0.7 PP.
  • The proportion of Sikh population has declined by 0.2 PP.
  • The Buddhist population has declined by 0.1 PP during 2001-2011.
  • There has been no significant change in the proportion of Christians and Jains.


As per the 2001 census, India’s total population was 102 crore, of which the Hindu population comprised 82.75 crore (80.45%), and Muslims 13.8 crore (13.4%).

The population growth rate in the decade 2001-2011 was 17.7%.

The population growth rate of different religious communities in the same period was:

  • Hindus: 16.8%
  • Muslim: 24.6%
  • Christian: 15.5%
  • Sikh: 8.4%
  • Buddhist: 6.1%
  • Jain: 5.4%

Six major religious communities namely Hindu, Muslim, Christian, Sikh, Buddhist, Jain, besides ‘Other Religions and Persuasions’ and ‘Religion Not Stated’ feature in the data.

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