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Live and Express


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#India to beat #China in #Population by 2022; Child #Adoption process getting simpler

Life is a mixed bag.

Last week, two significant headlines hit the news. The first is about the estimate that the India Population is going to exceed China by 2022which is a bad news, as we had expected it to happen by 2028 earlier.  The other is about the child adoption process in India is getting faster, easier and transparentwhich is a good news, as more people including NRIs can adopt in a simpler way moving forward.

One is a problem, and other is a potential solution. While some even neglect to think that the child adoption is a potential solution to the population problem (and say that adoption is emotional, the child and parent should connect well, one cannot adopt ANY child, etc, which are all reasonable), many consider it as a viable solution.  Here is an example of a parent who thinks so.

The Central Adoption Resource Agency has created a database of children that are waiting for adoption, and it has linked the adoption agencies to the database.  This way quick access to children to be adopted is available to the agencies.  Potential parents can now register online for them to be considered.  The guidance will be effective by August 2015, is what the post says.

With these updates, the urban folks of India now have a choice.  We have written several blogs before encouraging urban parents to adopt and why.  Several things have changed from the past, and attitude of the young generation is changing too.  With limited resources that India has, population has to be kept under strict check, and adoption is one way out – to give life to an existing child rather than creating another which will add additional burden to the country – burden may be a strong word, but yes, that’s how it is – with population increasing 1.6% in India every year!


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Aadhaar, National Population Register and #India #Population

Yesterdays report in The Economic Times says that the Indian Government has decided to link Aadhaar information to National Population Register (NPR).

This is a very good move. This will not only benefit people who are benefited by the various schemes, it will also bring accountability to the population count, who everyone is, and where they generally live. And this will help in measures related to resource allocation (money and workforce) in implementing government plans and schemes.

It will also help check illegal immigration from Bangladesh. One of the serious issues that we have in the states bordering Bangladesh is that identifying individuals had become difficult for the police and the establishment because of the facial features.   Many Indian citizens who live in the remote areas do not have identity cards like PAN, thus it would be impossible to identify whether a person is an Indian citizen or not. Now, with Aadhaar linking to the NPR, bio-metric information is stored to the master database, so more accountability is brought in.

In addition, it would be great if birth & death registrations become online for quick updates to population count, so that planning become efficient.


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India Population, rural unemployment and #MakeInIndia

Indian Government has initiated the #MakeInIndia campaign to harvest the workforce of young Indian population, increase employment through private ventures, increase foreign capital and thus boost Indian economy.

This is a great initiative.

Employment, literacy, population, labor, economy, and internal migration are all inter-twined areas.

When I started studying India population and collecting data, I was also interested in finding out why there is so much of population.

When the illiterate rural family who does not have the skills (be it white-collar, blue-collar or any other skills) is unemployed, their mindset works like ‘If I generate many babies, those children will grow up, earn money for the family, and we will all live happily’.  Since they themselves are unable to support the family through their employment, they think their children might help.

If the rural people have jobs and if their basic essentials are taken care of well, they will stop producing babies for labor.  This will significantly slow down the population growth. They will also stop migrating to far-off states and urban cities in look for employment. They will stay at their origins, sustain their culture and live well. And that should be the goal of any employment initiative – to bring employment close to the home of the people.

With this in mind, I collected information about the rural districts where the unemployment is huge.  Thanks to the Census 2010, this information is readily available from India Census web-site.

There are hundreds of rural districts with millions of people unemployed.  The most unemployed rural districts fall under just three states: Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and West Bengal.  These three states constitute 47 out the 50 top rural districts in non-working population!  And not a coincidence, these are the three big states in which the population & population density are the highest!

Indian Government should first implement the #MakeInIndia in these rural districts and create jobs.  This will reduce the huge burden of unemployment, and tremendously help in containing population through economic empowerment, which will reduce the stress on the natural resources, and thus protect the environment too.  This will also reduce the stress on the other states/cities which are affected by migration from these states.

Given below is the list of the top 5o rural non-working population districts of India (Source: Census 2010) :

State District Non working
WB S 24 Parganas 3869583
WB Murshidabad 3695310
Bihar P. Champaran 3073465
UP Azamgarh 2966814
WB P. Medinipur 2932972
Bihar Muzaffarpur 2923198
UP Allahabad 2861171
Bihar Samastipur 2811017
UP Jaunpur 2804774
WB Pur. Medinipur 2787352
WB Barddhaman 2770069
Bihar Madhubani 2738744
WB N 24 Parganas 2719493
UP Sitapur 2690613
Bihar Saran 2649028
UP Gorakhpur 2506676
WB Nadia 2438125
Bihar Darbhanga 2436689
UP Kheri 2434230
UP Sultanpur 2412975
UP Hardoi 2393945
Bihar Gaya 2326032
UP Kushinagar 2324939
Bihar Vaishali 2265128
Bihar Siwan 2263918
UP Moradabad 2247849
UP Ghazipur 2217015
AP East Godavari 2203869
Bihar Patna 2184567
Bihar P.Champaran 2174799
Bihar Sitamarhi 2174714
UP Bahraich 2135098
WB Maldah 2113423
UP Budaun 2109749
UP Gonda 2104821
UP Pratapgarh 2020511
WB Hugli 2017615
UP Muz.Nagar 2008744
UP Ballia 2007207
UP Deoria 1990563
UP Rae Bareli 1988497
UP Bareilly 1985597
WB Bankura 1939987
UP Bijnor 1929865
Kar. Belgaum 1892472
WB Birbhum 1884465
Bihar Purnia 1878404
Bihar Katihar 1860824
Mah. Pune 1849639
UP Bara Banki 1841041
Total 118857595


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India Population and infertility clinics

To anyone, who is on top of the statistics on India Population, it would sound weird to hear that there’s a claim that there are not sufficient infertility clinics and treatment in India. But, as the recent article shows, they claim that India need more infertility treatment clinics !

It’s kind of weird. On one hand, we are running short of resources because of overwhelming population. On the other hand, we are still running to infertility treatment clinics. So, where is the disconnect?  It is in people’s minds where they are still seeing only children born out of their womb as their children.

I was talking to a friend recently who declared “Every responsible person in India should have their own children, in order to generate responsible citizens!” So, if one adopts a child which does not have anyone to care for, give them education and nurturing, would the child not grow as a responsible citizen?  It will, but, people think that their own blood and genes is so sacrosanct to generate ‘responsible’ citizens, and other people’s genes are not.

So, this individual ‘responsible’ reproduction, even with the aid of infertility treatment, has given rise to collective irresponsibility of generating mind-blowing 1.4 billion population.

The funny thing is the article above says that the infertility treatment is not ‘enough’ for India, and advocates ‘budget’ infertility treatment too!  I wonder if these doctors ever see the population statistics, or just their own survival!

I was talking to a writer today who said, ‘Venkat, with the economic prosperity, the no. of children will go down’.  Agreed, but when?  Time has run out already.  70% of the population is still under-privileged, and the ‘economic prosperity’ has not reached them. They still generate babies for labour.  By the time they achieve the prosperity, India will have irreversible issues.

If rural generates babies for labour, and city people go to any extent to have their own children, where will this end up?

Urban, semi-urban people have the luxury to make personal choices of not to have babies or adopt. They should exercise those choices. And that will make them as true patriots of India!

How can you help?

 


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India Population and social enterpreneurship

I have had the opportunities to attend the meets and presentations of social enterpreneurship companies. I have also had the opportunity to talk to a few leaders in this area of work.

Social enterpreneurship companies are a key factor in developing the people in the India’s rural. They work in several states, and they have access to the local NGOs and organisations who work on the ground at grass root levels.  So, I was musing how it would be to take the message of population awareness through these companies, make people see the perils of continuing population growth, and make people feel responsible in their own families.

As per the India Census 2011 data, a whopping 84% of India households have 3 people and above!  55% of households have 3-5 people. 25% of households have 6-8 people. 7% of the households have 9 people and above!

You might ask “Well, is it not a good indicator that we are living in a joint-family setup?”  Yes and No. because on the flip side, these people in turn have the potential to give birth to more babies. India’s average population density is around 800 people/sq.km, while the ideal is only 197 people/sq.km.

So, I thought I would give this information to the social enterpreneurship companies, so that they , start guidelines to the people who get loans on the rural areas that if the family generates more babies, no more loans!  Reward and punishment through economic enablement!

This concept is not new. In Bangladesh, Mohammad Yunus’s social work has responsible reproduction as a directive (among their 16 directives) for the families that get loan from their organisation. So, why not in India?

I met these enterpreneurship companies higher-ups recently. I talked to them about this to see how they feel.  The response was not surprising, but the excuses that they gave were hilarious!

One said, “Venkat, see population is not the problem.  It’s the corruption and pseudo-social work done by the politicians. So, I would suggest that people like you take a stand against corruption.”
I blinked and then wiped my eyes thoroughly.

Listen to another one. This enterpreneurship company recently had a Twitter chat to get their message out. I participated in the chat, and brought up the population issue, and if they can have directives on the families that they give loans to.  This person pointed me to some weird Niger related data, which showed that a lean population will affect social work! Excuse me?  Do we have a lean population in India?  Why not take a cue from Bangladesh, which is right next to our country and has same population issue as India?

I tried to get into their shoes and understand their line of thinking of why they are saying no. It struck me immediately.  For them, the more no. of members in a household, the more business they can do!  But, I think they are short-sighted.  The more no. of members, will decrease their ability to serve many other families.  Why not spread the loans out to families which are responsible with their no. of children, and help them grow?

So, this misconception that more babies means more business should be removed from their minds.  They can gently persuade the families in the rural to not to generate babies.  It should be an integral part of their social plan. Otherwise their work cannot scale.

Social enterpreneurship companies along with the NGOs are the only hope to spread the message of population containment in the rurals.

Hope they would do!


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Chennai: Are you going to bathe out of water bottles?

Chennai is always remembered for its December Carnatic music concerts and the aroma of filter coffee!

But that’s not everything Chennai is remembered for. On the bitter side, it’s remembered for its never ending water woes. And the bad news is, it just got worse, because of the expansion of the city.

recent report states that while Chennai’s current water supply is 600 million litters per day, it’s demand for water is going to grow to 1584 million litres per day in just 3 years! Urgent measures like getting ready to use the full capacity of desalination plants are going to yield very minimal results, as the demand is going to grow 2.5 times!

Chennai already has severe water shortage problem, and there’s no addition to the existing sources of water.

With a population of 8.6 million people as of January 30, 2014 (remember it was 4.3 million in 2001!), the demand is getting worse because of population explosion, immigration and urbanization. People can take pride with the fact that Chennai is growing by boundaries, and hence their real estate value is going to go up, but with no water to drink and use, the city’s existence and value is going to collapse if not now but in the near future.

In spite of Tamilnadu having many Tier 2 cities, the immigration is still happening to Chennai. Moving some Government functions and IT/BPO industries to the other Tier 2 cities will help mitigate the problem a bit. There are several logical choices like Trichy, Madurai, Tirunelveli and Erode.

Government is taking all the steps possible to take care of the water problem, but, ultimately it is in the citizens hands on how this can be mitigated.

I am not a water conservation advocate, because I know that at this scale, any amount of water conservation will not solve problem. I am not a tree planting advocate for Chennai, because (a) in Chennai, all the land has been usurped, (b) even if we start planting trees now, it will take 10 to 15 years for the trees to grow and take care of the water level – not to mention the Chennai problem of salt water mixing with underground water.

But I am going to suggest that Chennai folks stop their reproduction!  Irrespective of whatever the Government does to mitigate the situation, even, if the state capital offices and IT/BPO companies are moved to other cities, if people keep on giving birth, it is not going to help the situation.

One could stay single (or) marry but not generate babies (or) adopt instead of giving birth.

There’s still a tendency to run to fertility clinics when existing people don’t have water to drink and use, and there are children on streets with no one to take care of them.  Instead, folks should think of going to adoption centers and orphanage homes and see if they can adopt.

I am providing a few links on how individuals can act than blaming it on everyone and everything else.

As someone said, Chennai is drinking from water bottles, it won’t be far when it starts to bathe from water bottles. Now, that would be sad.

Resources:


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Delhi, may be it’s time for – We two, adopt two!

Congratulations! Delhi is the 2nd most populous city in the world! Sounds as though we are lifting some trophy in the World Olympics Championship! Not!  The bomb had already ticked a lot, and it now exploded! Now it’s time for the triage. Looky looky here!

That article talks about two things: (1) Condoms & sex education, (2) migration from other places.

Do you actually believe that a person living in a large city is unaware of the consequences of unprotected sex?  If yes, do we know what percentage?  Or should we take an SMS poll to figure out that number?

Yet, average people are bogged down by the mental challenges of handling their family, friends and circle for not having a kid. If they are really up to not having a biological baby, there are multiple options available: (a) stay single, (b) get married but decide not to have kids, (c) get married, but adopt instead of having biological children (in fact, the office of CARA, the department for adoption enablement under Ministry of Women and Child Welfare, is right there in Delhi!)

Migration from other places because of lack of opportunities, jobs, and sheer ambition to make it big in a city are also important reasons. While the state governments have to take care of the basic amenities in the rural and towns, and provide moderate growth opportunities, so that people don’t move to the cities, it’s the people who are in the cities who have lots of opportunities to do something about containing the India population.

Why do I say that? Because urban people are mostly (hopefully) educated; they have access to information; they have independence to think through and make personal choices like not having kids; and they have means to adopt children if they wish to, from orphanages and homes,and give them a home.

Delhi Government cannot keep building metro over metro, double-decker metro, underground triple-decker monorail, etc. It’s the urban people who need to take responsibility, if they want to live well in a city state, which is around 1500 sq.km in size (including NCR), but has around 25 million in population. That’s roughly 16700 persons per sq.km, while the healthy population density for India is 197 persons per sq.km.

Remember, it’s not ‘We two, Ours two’ anymore. It’s ‘We Two, Adopt Two’ time!

YOU, yes YOU! Please think about it, and act, or rather not act in the wrong direction!

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