Like every other issue in India, the issue of population is also directly related to politics. The politics of castes takes place according to the population and the caste leaders in political parties are asked in proportion to their numbers. Similarly, the politics of polarization is also based on the population. Population growth rate has always been a polarizing issue for the Bharatiya Janata Party. The BJP and its leaders feel that the Muslim population is growing faster than other communities and this will one day change the population structure of the entire country. This is true to some extent from the point of view of fertility rate, but there is no scientific basis for the possibility of changing the population structure of the country. Still, no one can be stopped from doing politics on this issue.
Now the Union Health Ministry has presented the latest report of the National Family Health Survey ie NFHS., In which it has been claimed that the rate of population growth in India has stabilized or has become negative. According to this survey, the fertility rate in rural areas of India 2.1 percent and in urban areas this rate is 1.6 is percentage. According to the standard set by the United Nations, if the fertility rate 2.1 percent, it means that the rate of growth of population has stabilized or is decreasing. Now there are only five such states in the country., where the fertility rate is the total fertility rate., TFR is more than two. The state with the highest TFR in this is Bihar., where its rate is three. then in Meghalaya 2.9, in Uttar Pradesh 2.4, in Jharkhand 2.3 and in Manipur 2.2 Is.
in India 1951 When the first population policy was made in India, at that time the total fertility rate was six. This meant that a woman was giving birth to an average of six children. According to the National Family Health Survey, it is now closer to two, which means that a woman is giving birth to two children on average. This is less than the replacement rate. replacement rate 2.1 It happens, which means that if a woman on average 2.1 Giving birth to children, then it will be considered that the rate of population growth has stabilized. The total fertility rate in India is now less than the replacement rate., Which means that now the rate of growth of the country’s population has stabilized and it will decrease further.
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However, this does not mean that the population will no longer increase. The average age of the people of the country has increased due to reduction in infant mortality rate and good food and medical facilities. Therefore, the population will not start decreasing immediately. But it is also a matter of no less satisfaction that the fertility rate has fallen below the replacement rate. This is a great achievement of the country, The credit for which should be given to the common people. India has been able to achieve this achievement, one reason for this is the awareness spread from village to village through NGOs in the last two decades and the other reason is the spread of education. A figure from the National Family Health Survey report is sufficient to prove that the spread of education has been the most effective of any policy measure in population control. According to this report, the fertility rate among women who do not go to school 3.1 Is, whereas 12 This rate is only for women who have been schooling for a year. 1.7 Is. ie just 12Fertility rate has become negative even in women studying up to 10th, On an average, such women are giving birth to less than two children.
Then there is the big question whether any law is still needed for population control., It is an old concern of both the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh and the Bharatiya Janata Party that the Muslim population is increasing., Due to which the population structure of the country will change. By law, now they should be free from this worry. but it’s not like that. BJP leaders are still telling the need of population control law. Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Karnataka, Gujarat, Assam, Preparations for bringing population control laws in BJP ruled states like Uttarakhand have been going on for a long time. Various suggestions are being given. Somewhere people with more than two children are being advised to stop contesting elections, and somewhere they have a job., It is being proposed not to give benefits of government subsidies or other schemes. But these are all unscientific measures.
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Such coercive measures may not work in India. 1975 At the time of the emergency imposed in the then Congress government started the program of compulsory sterilization., Which caused great loss. After that event, for more than two decades, all the measures of population control were almost at a standstill. year 2000 It again accelerated after the introduction of the new population policy. However, even then the responsibility of family planning remained almost entirely with women. But the situation has changed in the last two decades. spread of education, Due to health awareness and to some extent the economic condition, gradually the rate of population growth has started stabilizing.
It is true that the National Health Survey report does not show the overall picture. It has its limits. It does not give actual figures of population growth of different religious or ethnic groups. That will have to wait for the next census. There is also a danger that even if there is a slight discrepancy in the figures, then the actual number of citizens can vary by crores because India’s population is very large. Nevertheless, there is no reason to doubt the findings of this survey. This has made it at least clear that the measures currently being tried in India are yielding positive results. Therefore, it would be better to spread education and health facilities and increase awareness than to take any additional measures or try to control the population forcefully by enacting laws. The damage done in India during the Emergency and population control measures adopted in neighboring China should be taken into account and allowed to stabilize naturally.