Population Growth in India
Out of the 6 billion people in the world, 1 billion of these are from India. Despite the presence of a population policy in the country, little has been achieved in terms of population control. This report shall look into the population trends of India and then present some insights on its impact on the country’s economy as a whole.
Data of India’s Population
CENSUS POPULATION OF INDIA, 1901-91
** Exclusive of J&K
Source: Registrar General of India
Projected Population of India (1996 – 2016)
Source : Compiled from the report of the Technical Group on Population Projections (1996)
The data of India’s population from 1901 to 1991 and projected population from 1996 to 2016 were taken from Indian NGOs website. The website derived their data from the Registrar General of India and the Technical Group on Population Projections. The population pyramid that was presented after the population data was taken from the U.S. Census Bureau website.
The issue of population growth in India has been a topic of concern because the country is currently facing an intense crisis of resources. India’s huge population puts pressure on its limited resources. The country’s food security was being threatened by environmental degradation and the continuing contraction of cropland per person. This problem caused dispute among communities and states. In 1999, an article from the World Watch Institute indicated that in the years 1960 to 1999, the average hectares of grainland for each Indian has decreased from 0.21 hectares to 0.10 hectares. The amount decreased by less than half as much. It was projected that this amount will shrink to only 0.07 hectares per person in 2050 (Brown and Halweil). The presence of an unhealthy workforce leads to lesser productivity. This will eventually slow down long-term growth. A high population growth rate could also have an impact on infant and child health. This will also pose challenges in terms of educating the young population. Education is essential, especially for the females, because it is the key to smaller families.
The first table indicates that population growth rate has increased for most of the periods from 1901 to 1991. The average population growth rate peaked in 1971 at 2.24%. The population projections for the years 1996 to 2016 shows an average population growth rate of 1.58% from 1996 to 2006 and 1.45% from 2006 to 2016. These projections show some promise, but knowing the country’s existing population, these estimates are not good enough. The second table indicates that India’s population will increase from 934 million to 1.2 billion in 2016. Since the projected decrease in the level of population growth rate is not enough, an effective population control program with solid implementation is still necessary to address this alarming concern.
India’s population pyramid for the years 2000 and 2025 are shown above. The huge base shows that a majority of the population are the the young ones. In the years to come, the number of women in child bearing ages and the working age population will become a greater part of the total population than today. According to a study on the population of India, the total fertility rate has decreased by 42% since 1965. Despite these numbers, the number of births will still be expected to be high because of the continued increase in the number of women in the reproductive age (Adlakha, 1997, p.1).
Adlakha, A. (1997). Population Trends: India, International Brief. Retrieved from U.S. Department of Commerce, Economics, and Statistics Administration. Bureau of the Census.
Brown, L., and Halweil, B. (1999). India Reaching 1 Billion on August 15: No Celebration Planned. Retrieved December 10, 2007 from World Watch Institute.
IndianNGOs. (N.D.). “Population: Statistics.” Retrieved December 10, 2007 from http://www.indianngos.com/issue/population/statistics/index.html
U.S. Census Bureau. (2007, July 16). “Country Summary: India.” Retrieved December 10, 2007 from http://www.census.gov/ipc/www/idb/country/inportal.html#DI