Ravi Kishan, a BJP MP from Gorakhpur, announced on Friday that he would introduce a private members’ bill on population control in the Lok Sabha. The bill was scheduled to be introduced on Friday.
A private member’s bill is introduced by an MP other than a minister. There is little possibility of such a bill becoming a law without the government’s support. Since 1970, no private members’ bill has been passed by parliament, PTI reported, quoting data from PRS legislative.
The population control bill was introduced just one day after the United Nations predicted that India would overtake China as the world’s most populous country by next year.
Many BJP leaders, including Union Minister Girija Singh, have called for legislation to curb India’s rising population growth. The Union Health Ministry, on the other hand, stated earlier this week that it was not considering any such proposal.
What is stated in the Population Control Bill?
The proposed bill is intended to discourage couples from having more than two children. It states that couples with more than two children will be denied government jobs and government subsidies for various services and goods.
However, the two-child policy has been introduced in parliament nearly three dozen times but has yet to receive approval from either house.
The Population Control Bill of 2019, which was withdrawn in 2022, proposed a two-child policy per couple. The bill also proposes to incentivize policy adoption by providing educational benefits, home loans, better job opportunities, free healthcare, and tax breaks.
What exactly does the constitution say?
Article 22 of the 1969 Declaration on Social Progress and Development, adopted by the United Nations General Assembly in a resolution, guarantees couples the right to choose the number of children they will have freely and responsibly.
Specifically, the policy of controlling and regulating the number of children violates constitutional rights such as Article 16 (equal opportunity in public employment) and Article 21 (protection of life and liberty).