Chandigarh achieves 'two children per couple' target
Chandigarh, July 19 (IANS) Chandigarh is among the 11 states and three union territories in the country which have beaten the 2010 deadline set by the central government to achieve total fertility rate (TFR) of two or 'two children per couple' policy.
The 2010 deadline for achieving the TFR was set by the central government under its National Population Policy of 2000.
'Chandigarh has scored the golden goal before the final whistle is blown,' according to a report on states that have achieved two children per couple target, released by the union health ministry.
The eleven states are Andhra Pradesh, Delhi, Goa, Himachal Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala, Maharashtra, Punjab, Sikkim, Tamil Nadu and West Bengal and the other two union territories are Andaman and Nicobar Islands and Puducherry which have also achieved the TFR target.
'This has been made possible due to the persistent efforts made by the health department to promote acceptance and usage of the family planning methods and create increasing awareness among the couples about the benefits accruing from a small family,' Chandigarh's health and family welfare director M.S. Bains said Sunday.
He said the use of family planning methods in the rural and urban areas in Chandigarh is 76 and 75.6 percent respectively. Awareness about various contraceptive methods in Chandigarh stands at 86 percent and efforts are being made to meet the demand for contraceptives.
The health ministry report rues the fact that populous states like Bihar, Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh would take another 15 to 20 years to achieve the TFR target.
According to the National Commission on Population Estimates, India is expected to overtake China, which imposed a one-child norm in early 1990s, in human numbers by 2030.
By 2016, Uttar Pradesh will account for 22 percent of the country's population while Bihar, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan, together, would contribute another 22 percent.
The report states that by 2050, India's anticipated population will reach more than 1.5 billion and more than 1.853 billion at the close of the 21st century.
India is expected to become the first and the only country on the planet to have a population of more than two billion while China's population is likely to drop after reaching the peak of about 1.46 billion in 2050. The US is unlikely to reach a billion-mark, the report adds.
Indo Asian News Service
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