Assam: Could anti-minority be the reason behind the proposed Two-Child Policy?

Assam: Could anti-minority be the reason behind the proposed Two-Child Policy?

Guwahati, January 12, 2018: If the Two-Child Policy comes into effect in Assam later this year, the proposed legislation on population control will disqualify Assamese with more than two children from applying for government jobs, standing for elected government service, including panchayats and civic bodies and from select housing, employment and other schemes.

“Assam is facing a dangerous population explosion,” the state’s health minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said claiming that this has led to the new proposed policy.

A few have opposed this statement and are positive that there is no such ‘dangerous population explosion’.

Assam’s Muslim population grew at 29.59%, close to three times the 10.9% growth rate of the Hindu population. This significant differential increased the share of Assam’s Muslims in the state’s overall population by 3.3% in the last decade – from 30.9% in 2001 to 34.2% in 2011 – over four times the 0.8% average accretion of Muslims across India.

A high population growth rate is not exclusive to Muslims in Assam. Muslim women have an average of 2.9 children while non-Muslims have an average of 2.2 children.

Prior to announcing the new policy, Sarma observed that Muslim population has outnumbered local Assamese in 11 districts and this changing demography of Assam poses a threat to the extinction of local people. He had spoken in favour of granting citizenship to Bengali Hindu migrants from Bangladesh, conspicuously passing over a similar assimilation of Muslim Bengalis.

Experts predicted that by 2050, India will take over Indonesia to become home to the largest Muslim population globally.

It is true that the Indian Muslim population grew 24.6% as against the 16.8% growth in the Hindu population in the decade ending in 2011 but that decade also saw the lowest growth rate in the Indian Muslim population since independence as well as the steepest slowdown in the group’s expansion.

The growth rate of Indian Muslims reduced from 29.52% to 24.6%.

Feature image courtesy: Reuters

Source: The Wire


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