On the occasion of world population day 2021, Uttar Pradesh CM Yogi Adityanath disclosed the first draft of the Population Control Bill 2021-2030. He pointed out the increasing population to be one of the root causes of the major problems including inequality in society. 

“Population control is the primary condition for the establishment of an advanced society. Let us, on this ‘World Population Day’, take a pledge to make ourselves and the society aware of the problems arising from the increasing population,” Adityanath tweeted. 

While proposing the bill he said that it’s time to follow the “Hum do Humare do” policy. The draft has been posted on UP law commission’s official website seeking suggestions from public, the enclosing date for submitting suggestions is 19th July 2021.   

What is the Population Control Bill?

The draft lists the benefits of following two child policy. The bill has been drafted by the Uttar Pradesh Health Department on the basis of National Family Health Survey-4.

The bill mainly focuses on “two-child policy” stating that people violating it in the state will be debarred from contesting local bodies polls, applying for government jobs and receiving any kind of subsidy, promotion in a government job. The bill also limits ration cards to four members. 

The government employees following the two-child policy will be eligible for benefits such as two additional increments during their entire service, subsidised purchase of plot or house, rebate on utility charges and three percent increase in Employee Provident Fund (EPF) under the National Pension Scheme.

Those parents raising a single child will get four additional increments, free healthcare and education for their child till the age of 20. Married couples who are to be parents will be allowed maternity or paternity leave with full salary allowances. 

The bill also states that, those who are not engaged in government jobs but following two-child policy will be liable to refunds on water and electricity bills, house tax and home loans.

The bill further encourages vasectomy and sterilization.

UP State Law Commission Chairman Justice AN Mittal said “those who are questioning this must know that the government can’t invest money of taxpayers on them with more than two children,”

The population control bill states the provisions applicable to married couples, where the boy’s age is not less than 21years and the girl’s age is not less than 18. 

If the law is approved, the provisions of the proposed bill titled The Uttar Pradesh Population (Control, stabilisation and welfare) Bill 2021-2030 will come into force a year from the date of publication in the gazette according to UPSLC (UP state Law Commission).

One of the key points in the new policy apart from better management of education, health, and nutrition of adolescents is also to make inclusive arrangements for the care of the elderly population.

The Necessary Steps And How The System Will Work:

The state population fund will be added to look after its implementation. Maternity centres will be established at all primary health care centres, the centres and NGOs will work towards it, will distribute contraceptive pills, condoms and will spread awareness about family planning methods through community health care workers. A mandatory subject related to population control in all higher secondary schools shall be introduced, effective steps will be taken to ensure proper system for safe abortion. 

 Why Is It Necessary To Enforce The Law?

The law panel said that it is necessary to implement the policy provisions to check on the population of the state for the promotion of sustainable development with more equitable distribution, to ensure healthy birth spacing, availability and affordability of proper quality reproductive health centres and services, to achieve population stabilisation and maternal and infant death and improving nutrition conditions. The main motive which drives the bill is to bring down the gross fertility rate among women to 2.1 by 2026 to 1.9 in 2030.

The Introduction of the draft bill has become a topic of debate, and has given rise to many controversies. “Any law against population control will be a conspiracy against Muslims,” asserted the SP MLA from Sambhal. AIMIM chief Asaduddin Owaisi, in the opposition of the population control bill, has said it violates Article 21.

“Article 21 of the Constitution of India says that no person shall be deprived of his life or personal liberty except according to procedures established by law.”

However, the panel has been discussing and studying the viability of the law in the state. Uttar Pradesh Law Commission Chairperson Justice (Retd) Aditya Nath Mittal told PTI, “We are studying various incentives and disincentives (of having the law).” 

“We are also examining various family units, besides their polygamy and polyandry aspects. It is premature to say anything,” he added.