PMA labels birth of 15000 babies on the New Year as a threat to country’s economic situation The New Year in Pakistan started with the news of 15000 babies born on the first day of 2019 only. Pakistan medical association secretary stated that “the birth of 15000 babies on the first day of 2019 is an alarming sign. The PMA has been raising its voice for long to curb the rapid increase of population in Pakistan.”
The PMA mentioned a report issued by the UN agency for children which shows the rapid birth rate of babies in Pakistan. The PMA secretary further discussed the Matter and said “We have 450,000 births in a month and 5.4 million in a year. This proves that Pakistan is among the countries registering fastest population growth.”
The Association voiced its concern that Pakistan’s population stands at more than 200 million at the moment and within a few years it will become the fourth most populous nation in the world.
CJP Saqib Nisar and PM Imran Khan aims to take measures to decelerate the growth rate
Back in December 2018, CJP Saqib Nisar held a symposium in Islamabad to come up with effective strategies to control the alarmingly fast growth rate.
The judge emphasized the immediate need for population control. He said that Pakistan just has to adopt models followed by some other countries who have successfully reined in their birth rate.
PM Imran Khan also attended the symposium and expressed his resolve to curb the menace of overpopulation.
“We are in these problems because of short term thinking. The democratic governments unfortunately only use to think about five years.” Said PM Khan.
He said that government has created task forces to address population growth and that all the provincial chief ministers were on board.
The main reason for overpopulation in Pakistan
The issue of rapid growth cannot be eliminated until we realize what are the main factors contributing towards it. Pakistan is an underdeveloped country and the burden caused by overpopulation pushes it further back in terms of national development. Let’s take a look at some major factors for overpopulation.
Lack of awareness and education
We know that the majority of people living in rural areas are uneducated and not much aware. They don’t know about the dire consequences of overpopulation. Talking about birth control is considered a taboo and so women are forced to give birth to children every year or two.
One of the major factors that push people into giving birth is the pressure of society. If you are a married couple than people won’t let you rest until you have given birth to a baby. And so many people decide to have babies due to family pressure.
Men don’t want to use birth control
In our patriarchal society, women have no say in anything even on her body. Men consider it their birthright to have babies with their wife whether she wants them or not.
In many rural areas, men don’t want to talk about birth control. They consider it an insult to their manhood. And even if they agree to birth control, women have to go through the procedure. Most men don’t want to use natural contraception methods just because of their sexual pleasure.
The so-called mullahs brainwash people into giving birth to the Muslim population can increase. They argue that ALLAH is raziq which indeed is true but ALLAH also asks you to use your mind. If you cannot provide your children with good education and basic commodities of life than its better to not bring them in this world.
Ineffective family planning programs
Although much has been done by the government in terms of providing family planning medicines to people. But still, there is so much left to be done especially in rural areas where health facilities are scarce.
There are a lot of misconceptions among masses about family planning. The government should adopt effective strategies to get rid of such misleading notions so more and more people may opt for family planning.
Various other factors
There are numerous other factors that need to be addressed when talking about what causes overpopulation? Early marriages, Afghan refugees and polygamy also feed overpopulation.
Another main factor is that in Pakistani society a boy child is preferred over girl child. Boys are considered to be bread earner for their families. Girls are considered a burden and many illiterate people mourn over the birth of girl child.
Due to this patriarchal thinking people keep giving birth to children in hope of a boy child. Some people even remarry the second time and thus cause an increase in the country’s population.
Lower death rate and higher birth rate cannot be ignored in these circumstances.
What needs to be done to decelerate overpopulation?
Pakistan is already suffering from the major water crisis. Our resources are diminishing rapidly. Unemployment, pollution, increasing the crime rate, low standard lifestyle, inflation are few effects of overpopulation. People are stuck in a vicious cycle of poverty because there is only one person to feed many mouths.
Bring our Ulamas on board
First of all, we have to bring our Ulamas on board as Iran did. Religious scholars have a huge following in masses and they can effectively play their part in spreading awareness about family planning.
Women should be empowered enough to have a say in birth control methods. An empowered woman can make better decisions for her family and herself.
Educate the masses
Education is the ultimate tool for a number of problems. We need to educate our people and especially government needs to open more schools in rural areas. Because mostly uneducated and underprivileged people have more children as they don’t have access to basic health resources etc.
Create population control policies
The government needs to initiate some kind of appreciation program in order to encourage masses to have fewer children as China did.