NEW DELHI: India is set to see the birth of as many as 69,944 babies on New Year's Day.
As per the latest data compiled by the United Nations, China and Nigeria will come next with 44,940 babies and 25,685 babies respectively.
Around 18 per cent of total baby births in the world are estimated to take place in India.
Yasmin Ali Haque, UNICEF India Representative, while commenting on this record said that this new year's day "let's all make a resolution to fulfil every right of every girl and boy, starting with the right to survive."
She also stressed upon the need to invest in training and in equipping local health workers so that every newborn is born into a safe pair of hands.
India's neighbour Pakistan (where 15,112 babies are expected) has been placed fourth in the list followed by Indonesia (13,256 babies), The United States of America (10,086 babies), The Democratic Republic of Congo (10,053 babies) and Bangladesh (8,428 babies).
Home to approximately 1.3 billion people, India at present is the second most populous country in the world, after China. According to UN estimates, India's population will slip past China by 2024.
As per the researchers at Yale University, a relatively young age structure also contributes to India's population growth. "The median age in India is 27 years, compared to 38 years for China. Children under age 18 account for one-third of India's population as compared with one-fifth of China's," the University stated in its report titled "India's Population: Becoming Number One"
The report further highlighted that New Delhi has achieved notable progress in reducing mortality rates.
"Life expectancy at birth increased from 44 years in the mid-1960s to 68 years today. India's child mortality rate at 38 per 1,000 births still lags behind China's rate of 11. Early marriage and pregnancy still contribute to excessive maternal deaths, and life expectancy of Indian women is eight years less than their counterparts in China," the Yale University report read.