At a time when the population of metropolitan cities across India is on the rise, Kolkata has suffered a dip in its population by more than 86,000 over the past decade.
The 2011 census results of West Bengal revealed that the population of Kolkata as on March 1 was 44.86 lakh as compared to 45.72 lakh in 2001. Among all the districts in the state it was Kolkata alone, which recorded negative growth rate.
“One of the major reasons behind this could be the migration of people. While the young generation is migrating to other cities and abroad for employment, some are being pushed to the outskirts due to skyrocketing real estate prices in the city,” said former director of Indian Institute of Population Sciences in Mumbai Dr TK Roy.
South 24 Paraganas and North 24 Parganas have recorded a steep rise in the decade.
“While the population of North 24 Paraganas has increased by 12.86% over 2001, that of South 24 Paraganas has increased by 18.05%. With a total population of more than one crore, North 24 Paraganas has become the second most populous district in India after Thane in Maharashtra,” director of the census operations in West Bengal Dipak Ghosh said.
“Another reason could be the fall in fertility rate. The fertility rate of Kolkata is lowest among all districts in India. Kolkata has only 6.69 million children below six years,” Ghosh added.