Owaisi opposes UP's population policy; asks Yogi to focus on jobs, healthcare
- Owaisi also highlighted that last year the Centre in an affidavit submitted to the apex court said ‘any coercion to have a certain number of children is counterproductive and leads to demographic distortions’ and asked the Uttar Pradesh chief minister to clarify on their collective stance.
All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) chief Asaduddin Owaisi voiced his opposition to the draft population control bill proposed by Yogi Adityanath-led Uttar Pradesh government and criticised the chief minister for what he called the government’s failure to address issues like unemployment and livelihoods in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Owaisi also highlighted that last year the Centre in an affidavit submitted to the apex court said ‘any coercion to have a certain number of children is counterproductive and leads to demographic distortions’ and asked the Uttar Pradesh chief minister to clarify on their collective stance.
“According to the National Family Health Survey (NFHS) data of 1999-2000 (the recent data is not published yet), the Total Fertility Rate (TFR) in Hindus was 1.2% while for Muslims it was 1.66%. I challenge BJP to tell me whether this data is true or not. If they think it is true, then why is this bill in place,” the AIMIM chief was quoted as saying by news agency ANI.
Owaisi cited a projection report to claim that the population in India continues to drop, and claimed that Uttar Pradesh's demographic dividend will last till 2050.
Owaisi said that Uttar Pradesh has at least 4 lakh malnourished children but the healthcare sector in the state continues to dither owing to lack of adequate primary healthcare centres, sub-centres and community health centres. He also took a dig at the state government for its “failure” to answer as to why “dead bodies were floating in rivers and people died due to shortage of oxygen.”
“Population control 'law' is against the fundamental right of the people of India. ICMR study says the real extent of COVID spread is far more than reported numbers. In states like Bihar, Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh the majority of Covid cases weren't counted. The government failed in preventing the second wave, then deserted Indians in need. Forget providing treatment, it didn't even care to count properly,” Owaisi said in a series of tweets.
Last month, Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath unveiled the state's Population Policy 2021-2030 on the occasion of the World Population Day. He said that every community has been taken care of in population policy. These developments come just months ahead of the Uttar Pradesh assembly elections slated for next year.