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Polish Peasants Hiding Data

Warsaw, June 24 (RFE/RL) -- Polish census takers say peasants are resorting to traditional tactics of withholding data on their crops and livestock - on grounds it could increase their taxes. The census began last week and ends tomorrow. The census takers are complaining that information provided does not reflect the real financial situation of many small farm owners, who say they are constantly operating on the margin of profitability.

Officials say it doesn't help much trying to reassure the peasants that the data collected is strictly confidential and for the exclusive use of the government-run main statistical office (GUS).