VISAKHAPATNAM:Andhra University vice-chancellor GSN Raju Saturday said that the World Population Day should be a platform to create awareness on avoiding early marriage, encouraging small families, providing proper education to all and promoting and supporting healthy life.
He was delivering the keynote address during the World Population Day celebrations, organised by the Population Research Centre at Andhra University, in association with the Economics department and Lions Club of Dwarakanagar in the city Saturday.
Effective use of availble human resources would help the country become a global super power in terms of both knowledge and economy, asserted GSN Raju. He felt that the World Population Day should be observed as a day to bring awareness on population issues across the globe rather than arguing over the pros and cons of population growth.
AU College of Arts and Commerce principal M Sundara Rao said that despite challenges consequent to population growth, India has a demographic dividend as there is a higher proportion of working age population. “Though prior to 1989 population growth was perceived to be hindering the socio- economic development, economists like Amartya Sen and others changed this perception. If the population is properly utilised it will enforce faster economic development,” he said.
Lions Club president C Sudarsana Rao said that currently child sex ratio dropped in India to 914. Efforts are necessary to educate and create awareness among women and youth, especially girls, about the best reproductive health practices, encourage small families and the need to protect the girl child.
AU economics department head P Tara Kumari said that necessary measures to control population helped the country achieve success with regard to many demographic parameters. However, the demographic indicators like minor marriage, infant mortality rate and maternal mortality rate and nutritional standards are still at unacceptable levels in the state.
Population Research Centre director R Ramakrishna said that India’s population was 121 crore in 2011 and it is estimated to reach 131 crore in 2015. Estimates reveal that 29 people are added every minute, 1,768 every hour, 42,423 ever day, 12,73,033 every month and 1,55,31,000 every year to the Indian population. Density of population is likely to be 493 by 2050. The fertility rate is likely to come down to 1.92 by 2050. The per cent of urban population is likely to reach 52% by 2050.