NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court has refused to entertain a plea seeking implementation of the two-child policy in the country to curb "monstrous" population explosion which is "seriously" polluting the environment and increasing pressure on natural resources.
A bench headed by Justice Kurian Joseph dismissed the petition filed by Anupam Bajpai, a social worker and National Coordinator NGO 'Jeevan Bachao Andolan', and asked her to approach the government authorities with her grievances.
The PIL, filed through lawyer Shiv Kumar Tripathi, had also sought measures to motivate citizens to follow the two-child norm and grant them facilities.
It also sought under such a policy withdrawal of facilities and concessions from those couples who violate the two-child norm.
"Every person should have a limit in giving birth only to the maximum of two children failing which the concerned person shall attract disqualification with respect to government facilities and other benefits being provided by the Government to its citizens," the plea said.
It further said that the population of India, the second most populated country in the world, is increasing with geometrical progression and there is no immediate ray of hope where the monstrous explosion of the population could be stopped to protect the environment and the natural resources.
"The rate of population is still increasing with the alarming rate and it cannot be allowed to increase further to save the future generation from the obvious danger to the environment and national resources," it said.
The plea said that the population menace has led to increasing pressure on the fuel demand and earning of livelihood for the survival of the masses and has led to the development of slums in the urban areas and the consequent unequal distribution of resources of the country.
It also claimed that the increasing population is facing a "tremendous and hazardous" effect on the environment concerning ground and surface water, air pollution and global warming.
"The rapid population growth and economic development in country are degrading the environment through uncontrolled growth of urbanization and industrialization, expansion and intensification of agriculture and destruction of the natural habitat," it said.
The plea also claimed that there is mounting pressure on agricultural land due to the growing population.
"The country is facing a serious environmental challenges which includes pressure on land, and soil degradation, forests, habitat destruction loss of bio-diversity, changing consumption pattern, rising demand of energy, air pollution, global warming, climate change, water scarcity and water pollution.
"Over the past about 50 years, while India's total population increased by about three times, the total area of land under cultivation increased only about 20 per cent and thus insignificant increase in cultivation land has taken place at the expense of forests and grazing lands," it said.
The plea further said that there is also mounting pressure on the forest resources of the country which has less than 2 per cent of the world's total forests area.
"The population growth has resulted in a downward trend in per capita availability of forests and agriculture lands, and this trend is expected to decline further if the population growth continues," it said.
It claimed that it has been estimated that over 1,000 animals species and subspecies are facing a threat of extinction while 20,000 flowering plants are estimated to be at such a risk due to this.