The Office of the Registrar General, India (ORGI) - popularly known as Census Organisation of India, is one of the largest producers of maps in the country. It has nearly 150 years of experience in disseminating Census data and publication of maps. The legacy of map publishing started from the reports of Census 1872 of North-West Provinces, Cochin, Bengal along with the very excellent volume of maps including maps of different collectorates of the Bombay Presidency in the same decade; five Taluk maps of Mysore State were published in Census 1891 report; maps included in the Encyclopaedia Linguistic Survey of India; the State Census reports of 1931; Special All India Ethnographic Appendix published in 1933 and the maps continued to be included in the District Census Handbooks of 1951 onwards. A major shift in mapping Census data however, was witnessed during Census of India 1961 when the first Census Atlas of 1961 was released during the International Conference on Population held at Delhi in 1968, in addition, the State and Union Territory atlases were also published. The tradition continued in the subsequent Censuses also. The preparation of administrative maps has been integral part of Census taking since 1872 when first Census was held in India non-synchronously. Since 1881, synchronous censuses held throughout the country and continued uninterruptedly. The mapping activities had also remained integral part of the Census 2011 that was the fifteenth in the series since beginning and seventh since Independence.

Map Division, being one of the important organs of the ORGI, plays a vital role in the process of planning and executing Census field operations across the nation. Usually, two kinds of maps are prepared by the Map Division of ORGI:
  a) Administrative maps for use in Census operations (pre-Census) and
  b) Thematic maps for use in data dissemination (post-Census)

In order to ensure the complete geographical coverage of the country without overlapping and omission in each Census, Map Division prepares maps of every administrative unit at all levels i.e., State/Union Territory, District, Sub-district (Tehsil /Taluk/ CD Blocks/ Police Station etc.), Town and Village.

The post-Census mapping includes dissemination of the Census data through thematic maps on various Census themes at State/Union Territory/District/Sub-district or Village level allowing proper spatial analysis. These are published in various map products like Census Atlas, Administrative Atlas, Language Atlas, Historical Atlas of India and District Census Handbooks (DCHB), etc. For each Census, the Division produces more than ten thousand administrative and thematic maps, which are made available for the user agencies, planners, researchers, students and policy makers.

Introduction of GIS in late 1990s in the Division has speeded up the map production process and enhanced the quality of the maps. The Division has gradually increased its capability and infrastructure for generating theme-based maps using state-of-the-art GIS technology. With its experienced cartographic professionals, Map Division is striving to use technology in simplifying its mapping activities, thereby facilitating the Census operations with innovative use of geospatial applications and disseminate the data in the form of maps.

In Census 2021 also, some path breaking initiatives have been taken up to generate geospatial data at Enumeration Block level to ensure complete geographical coverage of the country.