Experts skeptical of population control policy

Population experts say introducing population control measures similar to the one being drafted in Uttar Pradesh, as previously mooted by BJP officials in the city, makes no sense in Bengaluru.

The policy denies social benefits and government jobs to those with more than two children.

A city’s population is determined by three factors: natural increase, migration, and boundary changes. Bengaluru is currently facing uncontrolled migration, says Dr. CM Lakshmana, a professor at the Center for Population Research at the Institute for Social and Economic Change.

“Currently, there is no need for such a policy in Karnataka. Our Total Fertility Rate (TSF) is 1.7 and we have reached replacement level fertility,” he explains.

The TFR in a given year indicates the total number of children that would be born to each woman in the region, if she were to live to the end of her childbearing years and give birth to children in accordance with the predominant age. fertility rate. In India, the TFR is calculated for each state as part of the National Family Health Survey.

He says people are migrating to Bengaluru from other cities because they cannot find jobs there and there are plenty of jobs available here.

“Before, most migration was from rural to urban areas. Today, urban-to-urban migration has increased exponentially due to socio-economic disparities,” he says.

Bangalore is home to 36% of the total population of the state. This is more than the percentage of urban accumulation in any other city in South India, Lakshmana said Metrolife.

Such a situation leads to environmental degradation and excessive pressure on the city’s infrastructure. When the population increases beyond a certain point, health and well-being are affected, he observes.

Dr. Shobha N Gudi, Board Member of Indian Planned Parenthood Association and Professor and Head of Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at St Philomena Hospital, believes that Bengaluru can benefit from such a policy.

“Our population has almost doubled in 15 years, and while other factors play a role, there has also been a natural population increase,” she says.

Instead of launching a coercive policy, the government should reformulate it and offer women a choice between having more children and improving their careers and incomes, says Shobha.

Another demographics expert thinks a population control policy can be counterproductive. “Data and history prove that when development increases, population growth automatically decreases. A policy of population control can now lead to female infanticide and gender discrimination,” she warns.

Environmental activist Leo F Saldhana believes that the government is only trying to cover up its failures with such a policy: caused by economic policies that hurt the poor and working class, while rewarding the super-rich with wealth. ugly.

Tara Krishnaswamy, activist and co-founder of Political Shakti and Citizens of Bengaluru, thinks politics is used to communalize an issue.

“If they really want to control the population, the focus should be on improving per capita income and educating women,” she says.

Politicians need to stay out of citizens’ chambers and focus on the things that really matter, she says.