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David Spiegelhalter, president of Royal Statistical Society in the U.K., gave a most unusual presidential address in 2017. ___A___ talking about esoteric statistical techniques, he talked about declining trust in numbers in a post-truth society ___B___ by fake news and alternative facts. He ___C___ to the statistical community that the best way of inspiring trust was to be trustworthy by demonstrating competence, reliability and honesty.

India has been ___D___ in inheriting a statistical system from ___E___ like P.C. Mahalanobis and C.R. Rao that has historically demonstrated all three. However, with the growing demand for statistics and increasingly challenging data collection environment, the move by Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation (MOSPI) towards ___F___ a National Policy on Official Statistics is most welcome.

There is much to like in this policy. It notes increasing data needs, lays down the ___G___ for ethical data collection, highlights the importance of data quality and ___H___ the need for documentation and durable data storage. However, it also remains ___I___ within the confines of governmental administrative structures and does not directly address the criteria identified by Mr. Spiegelhalter. In the Indian context, each of these presents great___J___.

Important for :