Introduction to Population Concepts
A country of more than one billion citizens with almost half of them in the productive age group, should make for an energetic and vibrant India.
But can numbers this be our strength when as many as 36% of Indians are illiterate, when one in four children are not enrolled in school, and only 60% of those who enroll, reach standard five?
People who live in poverty, illiteracy and squalor can hardly be a strength. India and China are the only countries to have populations exceeding one billion. Current trends show that India is set to overtake China in numbers over the next few decades.
Even today, 20% of couples in the country continue to have children they do not want because contraceptive services do not reach them.
The United Nations Human Development Report, 2006 ranks India very low in the Human Development Index, which covers key parameters like life expectancy, school enrolment, literacy and income. India stands at 126 in a list of 177 countries. If this has to change we have to address core issues related to health, population and social development.
JSK is grateful to Population First, Shetty House, 3rd Floor, 101 M.G. Road, Fort, Mumbai - 400023 for allowing free use of the material and images.