Need to check population explosion

In her article “Need to contain India’s expanding population” (Nov 7), Seema Sengupta admits the inefficacy of welfare measures such as female literacy and employment to tackle the problem of population explosion, but fails to suggest any new solutions. Post-emergency, our democratic polity does not admit of any coercive approach but this is equally true that any politicking in case of this critical problem will cost the nation dearly.

Our political masters should take concrete steps like putting in place an imaginative regime of incentives and disincentives and interpreting existing laws in such a way that they cap the phenomenon of uncontrolled population growth. All this has to start right from the top i.e. putting a ban on those with more than two children from contesting elections to Parliament and state legislatures. Some states have such a ban in case of local body elections but that is not enough. Similarly, the laws banning abortion and sterilisation should not come in the way of curbing population growth.

Dr JAGDISH BATRA, Senior Lecturer, Hindu College, Sonepat


The family planning programme was launched in India more than 50 years ago. Yet, we have reached no where. Indonesia and China, whose population growth was among the highest, have effectively checked the birthrate in their countries. I suggest the following measures to check birthrate:



First, the Act that prescribes the marriage age of a boy at 21 years and that of girl at 18 should be strictly enforced. Those violating the law should be severely dealt with. This will solve 50 per cent of the problem.

Secondly, after two children, sterilisation either through vasectomy or tubectomy should be made compulsory. And finally, women’s education should be given top priority. When women are literate, they will go in for small family.

T.R. GOYAL, Chandigarh


Every individual should think of limiting the size of his family, without being swayed by the rise and fall of the population rate of any religion. The two-child norm should be strictly enforced. In fact, one should limit to only one child, son or daughter. Do not go in for sex-determination tests. Accept nature’s verdict.

Plan the family in such a way that giving birth to a child may not become punishment for the child as the world is changing very fast and parents may not be able to fulfill even the needs of the children in a world where market forces play a major role. So limiting the family to one or two issues is best for both the family and the nation.



Seema Sengupta’s views are of paramount importance for the country. Her view that we have 2.4 per cent of the total area of the world as against 16 per cent population is noteworthy. This ever-increasing population is the root cause of all our ills. Pollution, unemployment, soaring prices, adulteration and others can be attributed to this problem. Even corruption is the outcome of population explosion. Our political leaders should campaign for one or two-child norm along with measures for reward and punishment.

R.K. JAIN, Panchkula

This isn’t cricket

This refers to Abhijit Chatterjee's "The business of cricket" (Spectrum, Oct 24). Gone are the days when cricket was considered a gentleman's game. It has become a flourishing business today. Even the politicians want to become members of the cricket board. Sharad Pawar vied for the post of BCCI President but lost to Ranbir Singh Mahendra by one vote. The BCCI is one of the richest institutions of the country.

As much as Rs 180 crore has been deposited in the leading banks of the country. Sachin Tendulkar, Saurav Ganguly and Rahul Dravid are earning Rs 2 crore per year on endorsement. Prithvi Patel, whose position in the team has not yet been confirmed, is earning Rs 20 lakh per year. The ICC is trying to shift the headquarters of Lords to Dubai to earn a fair amount through matches.


Fabric of freedom

This refers to "Hi-fashion khadi" by Gaurav Choudhary and Smriti Kak Ramachandran (Saturday Extra, Oct 23). Former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi gifted a khadi sari made of yarn spun in jail by Jawaharlal Nehru to Maneka Gandhi when she married Sanjay. Sarojini Naidu always wore saris woven out of khadi. Undeniably, khadi instantly conjures up the images of Gandhi 'charkhas' and the Swadeshi Movement.

To become hip and happening, khadi must come out of its confines of staid colours, stacked on shabby shelves and sold by deadpan salespersons. The potential of this uneven and environment-friendly fabric lies in its sheer ethnicity and suitability to Indian climate.


Will to win

Apropos of Gitanjali Sharma's 'Winning streak' (Spectrum, Oct 31), Archana Naresh has proved that nothing is unachievable when one has the will power and determination to achieve it. Self-confidence and hard work is the key to success. n


Poet’s poet

Apropos of M.L. Dhawan's "Sahir: The poet lives on" (Spectrum, Oct 24), Abdul Hayee, alias Sahir Ludhianvi (1921-80), was essentially a poet of love and beauty. Being one of the inheritors of the romantic patriotic traditions blended with the Marxian thought, Sahir, like Jan Nisar Akhtar (1914-79), moved from romanticism to revolution.

While still a student at Government College, Ludhiana, he gave ample evidence of his non-conformist thinking His poetic competence came to the fore when he recited his nazm Taj Mahal at the college function that instantly immortalised him. Sahir was against feudalistic and chauvinistic attitudes of the society. Later, he felt disillusioned with Nehruvian socialism.

For Sahirl, his poetic craftsmanship was a "vehicle for the dissemination of social commitment and iconoclastic ideas". Sahir's film songs, published under the title, Gata Jaye Banjara have an unmatched quality and artistic beauty which have won place among the immortals of the Bollywood film music.



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