Wednesday, February 1st, 2023 07:31:59

Country Needs Population Control Measures

Updated: December 31, 2022 6:20 pm

India need a Policy for Population Control equally applicable to all. “”Religion-based-imbalance” and “forced Conversions” may raise the spectre of the Country breaking apart as has happened in the case of East Timor, Kosovo and South Sudan. These new Countries emerged because of the religious community-based imbalances. Population Control without balance on religious basis is a matter of great significance and cannot be ignored. Our Law-Makers must keep in mind that Population require resources, otherwise it becomes a burden in contrast to the view that Population can be an asset- for the reason that it enables a Country to earn demographic dividend. The birth-rate, Conversion by Force, lure or greed, infiltration, crass urbanization and lack of rural infrastructure have aggravated the problem of demographic change and the problem of population imbalance.

Consumption is the bedrock of an economy and in the current context; the demand has overtaken the supply of both natural and man-made resources. A decrease in population would not only reduce strain on natural resources but would present the Government with better policy choices over the country. More so, access to technology in the remotest of areas is driving an attitude shift amongst rural people. The fact also remains that a lot changes when people migrate from villages to the cities;. It is here that the child goes from another pair of hands to work in the fields to an additional mouth to feed. A woman is more aware when in the city as she has greater access to schools, to other women and to media. She demands more autonomy and often decides to have fewer children.

Population stabilization should be uniform and above caste, religion, language or region. The gravity of the problem can be realized in the state like UP where the child death rate due to anemia is higher than that of national level in a particular community.

Population explosion looms large and it is deemed that the continuous increase in population will result in dystopian future as population growth tends to outpace and stifle economic growth. Therefore, the solution to this predicament is to have small family. Further Population Control will ensure sustainable development with reduced inequality in income distribution. The Population Policy shall also improve both health and wealth by ensuring planned population movement. Equity is a major issue. Population growth cannot be said to be sustainable when many people are alive but still not getting enough. Besides, Population Policy can also create demographic dividend by removing regional imbalances. Varied demographics have varied development levels, creating social problems. The Population Policy be designed in such a way so that it creates balance in all the communities. The imbalance is creating stress on resources vis-à-vis the economic structure and therefore, needs to be rectified.

The Policy is already in place in the States like Rajasthan and Maharashtra (and very recently the Governments of UP and Assam have also enacted the Population Policy. The Country must focus on indicators that have a critical impact on stabilizing Population- such as increasing age of marriage, reducing unmet need for family planning and increasing modern contraceptive prevalence rates. Both the Centre and the States must initiate efforts to increase the accessibility of contraceptive measures issued under the Family Planning Program and provide a proper system for abortion.

Effective laws on Conversion, the National Register of Citizens and a check on infiltration are Key to develop the Policy. The Policy be designed keeping in view the availability of resources in the Country, future needs and the problem of demographic imbalance. Undoubtedly, a balanced Population is an achievement for a society on certain-scale, but this achievement will remain only when society is healthy and disease-free. Skilled manpower is an achievement but in a society with diseases, shortage of resources and disorder, the Population explosion acquires grim dimensions.

A clear indication of overpopulation in the Country is over-crowded metro-station, airport, railway station, road, highway, bus stop, hospital, shopping mall, market, temple and the places of social and religious gathering. It falsifies the “well- fabricated assertion” that India is on its way to completing its demographic transition and it should stop fretting about the Population problem.

The Country shall be in a position to reap the demographic dividend only by exercising a restraint on religion-based Population imbalance; if this is not ensured, India would be in peril of missing golden shot of rapidly making itself more prosperous. Therefore, it shall not be misleading to conclude by saying that India’s big population holds it back from becoming a “Vishwa Guru” or World Leader.

 

Prof Suresh Kumar Agrawal
(The writer is Professor & Head, Department of English, Maharaja Ganga Singh University, Bikaner.)

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