ANALYSIS OF POPULATION CONTROL BILL,2020
India’s population is going to overtake that of China in no more than a decade according to the report released by the UN- ‘world population prospects 2019’. The economic survey held in 2018 stated the term ‘son meta preference’ which means having the desire of a male child which consequently resulted in 21 million “unwanted girls”. In a desire for a male child, people have more than 4 children, which not only affect the health of the women by creating a burden on her but also the financial health of the family. Even after being poor most of them just care for a male child rather than looking for a healthy and prosperous family. The ever-increasing rate of population in India is the root of most of the problems like poverty, starvation, and malnutrition, exploitation or overuse of natural resources, etc. The need for the hour is to control the population and to solve this problem, a private member bill is to be introduced in Rajya sabha i.e. Population control Bill,2020.
Population Control Bill,2020
Shiv Sena Rajyasabha MP Anil Desai in February 2020 moved a private member’s bill proposing incentives to promotes a two-child norm. Desai has proposed that constitution be amended to introduce a new provision incentivizing those adhering to a two-child. The amendment to article 47A was proposed by this bill, as follows: “the state shall promote small family norms by offering incentives in taxes, employment, education, etc to its people who keep their family limited to two children and shall withdraw every concession from and deprive such incentives to those not adhering to the small family norm, to keep the growing population under control.”
Senior advocate and Congress leader Abhishek Manu Singhvi are planning to introduce legislation to foster a two-child policy for the country (population control bill,2020). Singhvi had initially announced his plan to introduce the population control bill during 2019’s winter session of parliament. The bill is now going to be introduced in the Rajya Sabha during the current session.
- The bill states its objective in long title/preamble as “to provide for measures to control the population in the country and for matters connected therewith and incidental thereto.” The bill provides for the definition of “appropriate Government”, “committee”, an employee of the union government”, “fund”, “prescribed”. The bill states that it applies only to a married couple.
- Section 5 provides for setting up districts level monitoring committee to be known as district population stabilization committee in hundred districts with the highest recorded population growth rates to fulfill the purpose of this act, by appropriate government defined in the Act. It further states that the committee shall consist of (a) the Chief Medical officer of the district; (b) the district collector; and (c) one representative from each panchayat Samiti in the district. The responsibility of the committee is to take steps to encourage the use of contraceptives and control the population growth rate in their concerned district.
- Section 6 of the bill provides for benefits to a couple who have only one child, voluntarily undergo sterilization/operation by the appropriate government which includes a reference to such child for selection in a government job and such other benefits.
- Section 7 of the bill states that if both husband and wife in case of a married couple who are living below the poverty line, and having only one child, voluntarily undergo sterilization/operation, such couple in addition to benefits of section 6, shall be eligible for payment from the central government of sixty thousand rupees if the single child is a boy or one lakh rupee if the single child is a girl,
- Section 8 of the bill states that both the husband and wife in the case of a married couple having more than two children, shall be debarred from contesting in Lok sabha, state legislature, and panchayat election; getting elected to Rajya Sabha, the state legislature, and similar elective bodies; getting promotion in government services; applying to ‘Group A’ jobs under the central and state government; receiving any kind of government subsidy, in case the married couple falls in the above poverty line category.
- Section 9 states that the appropriate government shall introduce a compulsory subject relating to population control in all senior secondary schools in states where the average fertility rate is more than the replacement level of 2.1 children per woman. Section 10 made provision for the constitution of the national population stabilization fund by the central government. The money collected under the fund shall be redistributed to the states and union territories that have implemented reforms to control the population and have been able to significantly reduce their population growth rate, in such manner as may be prescribed.
- Section 12 of the act provides provision for central government employees. It states that all employees of the central government shall submit an undertaking in writing to the respective appointing authority after one year of commencement of this Act that they shall not procreate more than two children, with the proviso that the employees who already have more than two children at the commencement of the Act shall not procreate any more children.
- Section 13 provides that the central government when recruiting employees shall give preference to candidates having two or less than two living children. Section 14 provides for power to make rules and section 15 provides for power to override laws.
The advantage of introducing and taking into the action of this bill is not only to the nation worldwide but to the individuals as well. It could be referred from above that this bill brings a lot of incentives to the couples be it below the poverty line or the above poverty ones.
- Educational benefits: if a family has two or less than two children then both of them can get a good quality education. When there are more children then due to poor financial conditions only one or two of them can get education barely. But under this bill couples adhering to the rules will gets benefits such as the admission of their children in good school by the government.
- Less exploitation of resources: if the population growth will be in control it will lead to lower demand for resources which will consequently result in the proper utilization of natural resources.
- Other benefits: there will be many more benefits such as tax cuts, free health care, various government subsidies, and all this will help in eradicating most of the problems like poverty. Hence, population control is the need of the hour and will contribute to the development of the country
The population control policy is applied to everyone irrespective of religion, race, caste, and color. It just focuses on stabilizing the growth rate of the population. It has provided many incentives including free healthcare, tax cuts, to the couples following the two-child policy, and also the ones having a single child have other benefits as well.
These all contribute to the benefits of the nation and natural resources. But as nothing serves everyone. Similarly, the introduction of this population control bill is not going to serve everyone and this might get worse in lower groups resulting in the burden over women re abandonment among all the people about the perks and disadvantages of the bill one will have.