Population policy in Kerala

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  • Population policy in Kerala, India
    • About
      • Kerala is a Southern Indian state
      • Kerala has a much lower population growth rate than any other area in India.
      • The policy was launched in 1952 as Kerala's 32 million make up 3.4% of India's total population.
      • India was the first developing country to launch a population policy and since the policy was introduced, Kerala is now one of the few regions that is stage 4  on the DTM.
      • There is 819 people per sq Km and the density is 3 times the Indian average.
    • Strategies
      • The strategies were put in place to increase living standards and to reduce population growth.
      • These strategies include better education for women, to improve literacy rates, establish equality and to educate the benefits of small families and contraception.
      • There are encouragements for smaller families such as extra retirement benefits.
      • Contraception and advice is free and maternity leave is only available for the first 2 children
      • The strategies aim to reduce population growth without the use of coercion.
      • Another important scheme is the land reform programme which aims to redistribute all land so no one is landless and everyone can be self-sufficient.
      • Health care was improved by vaccination programmes.
    • Problems with the policy
      • Since the policy was introduced , the replacement rate has decreased and now has a potential aging population.
      • The fertility rate is below the replacement rate, resulting in a smaller younger generation but an increasing older generation.
      • During the land reform programme, people lost their land and had to make way for new people.
      • It is predicted that by 2026,Kerala will have a serious aging population.
    • Effectiveness of the policy
      • Education has improved dramatically, particularly for women, this has led to improvements in health care and a low infant mortality rate of 12 per 1000.
      • The literacy rates are 91% in Kerala compared to India's national average of 65%.
      • Kerala has now reached stage 4 on the DTM.
      • The policy has worked as people have understood the benefits of small families without the use of coercion.
    • Future concerns
      • There is a significant risk of an aging population as the fertility rate of 18 per 1000 is lower than the replacement rate.
      • An aging population can lead to a smaller workforce, a decreasing workforce and a lack of services for the elderly.
  • The policies aim to reduce infant mortality.


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