Number of castes, ethnicities in Nepal increases to 142The number of mother tongues now stands at 124 and the number of religions followed in the country is 10.
The number of castes and ethnic groups in Nepal has increased to 142, according to the National Census 2021.
The 2011 census had recorded 125 ethnic groups.
The National Statistics Office, previously known as the Central Bureau of Statistics, said the latest information was published based on the recommendations of the expert group and answers by the respondents in relation to ethnicity, language and religion in the census.
Of them, Chhetris comprise 16.45 percent of the population, Brahmans-Hill 11.29 percent, Magars 6.9 percent, Tharus 6.2 percent, Tamangs 5.62 percent and Bishwakarmas 5.04 percent.
The number of mother tongues now stands at 124 and the number of religions followed in the country is 10.
The bureau said 124 languages have been listed while categorising 12 foreign languages as ‘other’ due to the very small number of speakers of the languages. It has also added 13 new languages. Nepal had recorded 123 languages in the previous census.
According to the census, Nepali is spoken by 44.8 percent of the population followed by Maithali at 11.05 percent. The third most spoken language is Bhojpuri at 6.24 percent.
Likewise, Tharu (5.88 percent), Tamang (4.88 percent), Bajjika (3.89) and Avadhi (2.96) are other languages spoken in various parts of the country, according to the census.
Hinduism is the predominant religion comprising 81.19 percent of the population. Among the rest, 8.21 percent of the population follows Buddhism, 5.09 percent Islam, 3.17 percent Kirat, 1.76 percent Christian, 0.35 percent Prakriti, 0.23 percent Bon and 0.01 percent Jain. Other religions followed in Nepal are Bahai and Sikha.
According to the 2011 census, Hinduism was followed by 81.3 percent of the population. Buddhism, Islam, Kirat, Christianity and Prakriti are followed by 9 percent, 4.4 percent, 3.1 percent, 1.4 percent and 0.5 percent of the population, respectively.