Monday, 27 July 2009

Child Birth in China & India

Recently , Chinese government expressed concern over their aging population, largely , as a result of their "One child policy" adopted since 1970's. The officials are planning now to encourage people to have more than one children in some parts of the country, however, it seems now that the populace has gotten so used to the economical structure of having only one children that the prospect of second child appeals to few. By an official estimate, Chinese have prevented 300 million childbirth since 70s. By no means a small number; it certainly has helped china in economical development .

In India too around the same time ( in 1975 , to be precise), Sanjay Gandhi championed the idea of population control through forced vasectomy. It didn't meet considerable success, nevertheless it throws a intriguing question in the ring. If I were to be born in China, I wouldn't have had my sister or brother, but being in India too could have led to the same case , had my father been the victim of the forced vasectomy operation. The question that it brings forth is , can humans can control human life , which in a sense seems recursive, we being the master of life. What it suggests to me ,is that in a proper philosophical sense life is not the end in itself, nor is death. If this thinking is to lead me to something , let it not be hampered by the belief that the "life's" supreme. What I suggest as the watchword for searching truth is "it doesn't matter"

However, coming back to the corporeal aspects. In an article published off late, author appeals to the Health ministry of India to focus on maternal care aspects , rather than on the population control measures directly. She ridicules the veneration of Malthusian idea of attacking the problem through numbers rather than by the improvement in care system. Population control, she suggests would be taken care by nature itself, the fertility rate of Indian population, she remarks , has gone down to 3.7. Surprisingly, or rather unsurprisingly, it is higher in the non prosperous states, while lower in the prosperous states. No prizes for guessing that it is high in Bihar, 4, higher than most other states, but an another statistics ranks high in Bihar, female mortality rate, pregnancy deaths, 321 out of 10,000, while the national average hovers around 250 odd. These findings in a way express the balance that the nature expresses to make. In order to keep their line alive , one factor's loss is compensated by the growth in another. However, its no matter of pride that Bihar leads in both these statistics and very certainly the factors that reduce one will help reduce other as well. Bihar has since long been the most deprived state of the Indian nation, a sort of live model for everything wrong with India. Poverty, illiteracy, casteism, floods, drought, and every other such thing, which a nation would like to avoid in the process of its development. Over here, it could serve as an example / testboard for what could be done to prevent the "volcano from erupting"

Child birth and thus population control is a serious and sensitive issue , which nation has to take with seriousness. Indian government could take the initiative by preventing deaths during child birth by heavily investing in the corresponding programs. Once the insurity of life decreases, the sense to control it would take deeper root, for now its the only source of insurance for the poor lot.

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