Overpopulation in India Essay

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Overpopulation in India: The Need for Improved Quality and Diversity of Contraceptive Options

On May 11, 2000, Astha (Faith) was born in the Indian capital on New Delhi.[1] Her birth was not only a significant occasion for her parents, but for the entire Nation of India. Astha’s birth was designated the official point at which the Indian population crossed the one billion human beings mark.[2] India was thus officially inaugurated into the very exclusive one billion inhabitants of one nations club, and the world was left to ponder the repercussions of such a development. Stepping over the one-billion line brought into question all the policies, efforts, and difficulties that the Indian government had implemented and fought for over a half a century in order to prevent just such a joyous occasion from happening.

The Indian Family Planning Program, initiated in 1952, was a sign of the desire of Indian leadership to develop the nation and take the steps necessary to do so. The program has evolved throughout the years, meeting varied success; however, in the year 2000 one aspect of the program has become blatantly clear – it has not succeeded in slowing India’s rapid population growth to a population replacement level. One of the major reasons India has failed to reach the replacement rate is because of a family planning program that emphasized sterilization as the main method of contraception and de-emphasized temporary methods. The services provided by the program were of poor quality. If the Indian government can even hope to reach its ultimate total fertility rate (TFR) of 2.1 in all of its states and provinces, it must shift its policy from the emphasis on sterilization as the main method of birth con...

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...could be a good alternative for women who forget to take daily birth control pills. The ring is inserted into the vagina where it releases estrogen and progestin. The benefit of the ring is that it can be inserted for three weeks at a time thus disposing of the daily pill-taking requirements of traditional oral contraceptives. The widespread availability of such a method could have a similar effect as that of centchroman. Another contraceptive method, the female condom, could help alleviate cultural resistance to birth control. The female condom would perhaps increase participation in family planning by those couples who do not wish to use methods that have more side effects, but whose male partner is reluctant to use condoms.

[47] Government of India. Department of Family Planning. National Population Policy. 2000.

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