Blaming Muslims for population explosion: Little truth, more propaganda

Spread the love

By Dr. Javed Jamil

Taking advantage of the World Population Day recently, again some leaders tried to put the blame of “Population Explosion” in India on Muslims; Once again they tried to prove that the current Muslim rate of fertility is “so high” that Muslim population will overtake Hindu population in not so distant future. I do not want to go into the political side of this issue, which is too well known to be repeated here. I will focus only on the facts involved.

First, the gap between fertility rates of Muslims and Hindus has been narrowing fast in last thirty years. According to various reports, it has gone down from 1.8 to 0.5 per cent and is continuously narrowing. This clearly shows that Muslims are fast adopting family planning. It is also important that I had published a book “Islam and Family Planning” in 1993 which had generated huge interest in the country and the book helped Islamic scholars and common people in developing a positive attitude towards family planning within the boundaries of Islam. The book argued that while Islam permits family planning, it cannot approve Terminal Methods like Sterilization and Abortions.  See the following table:

Religion

1992

1998

2005

2015

Muslim

4.4

3.6

3.4

2.6

Hindu

3.3

2.8

2.6

2.1

Christian

2.9

2.4

2.3

2

Buddhist

2.9

2.1

2.3

1.7

Sikh

2.4

2.3

1.9

1.6

Jain

2.4

1.9

1.5

1.2

 

·

·

·

·


(Source: Pew Research Centre)

It is clear that Muslim population cannot come anywhere close to Hindu population in even several hundred years, unless there is any unforeseen reason leading to mass conversion.

Second, if there is still some gap between Hindus and Muslims, this has nothing to do with any planned attempt to overtake Hindu population. Of course, educational and social backwardness are important reasons but another plausible reason is the female infanticide which is alarming in several states like Haryana, Rajasthan and Punjab with the gap between male and female births reaching around 20 per cent in many areas. This is surely more common in Hindus than Muslims. If strict measures against female infanticide are taken, surely, the gap will become narrower. I will like to appeal to my Hindu brothers to run a full-fledged campaign against feticide (abortions) in general and female feticide in particular. This will largely alleviate their fears about the gap between Hindu and Muslim fertility rates because the fertility rate depends largely on the number of females in society. Long term consequences of female infanticide can be socially disastrous not just for Hindus but for the country as a whole.

Third, the major problems due to population growth are not related to the growth at the national level but because of rapid growth in big cities. Despite the fertility rate in cities like Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Kolkata and other capitals and big cities being on the lower side, the population in these cities is growing at tremendous rate. This is because market interests support this over-urbanization and there is hardly any emphasis on rural development and development of small cities and blocks. Even if population growth becomes zero percent, the overcrowding in cities is going to cause huge problems due to migration of people from villages to small cities and from small cities to big cities.  There is a need to de-urbanize and new  small cities to be formed. Thanks for the dominance of the market fundamentalism in government policies no concern is shown on the huge rise in the population of vehicles and air conditioners which is creating huge detrimental effect on air quality. The whole world is facing disastrous consequences due to the global warming. Even right now, European countries including Britain are in the midst of the highest temperatures recorded in the history.

 

This is also interesting to know that, thanks again to the dominance of Economic Fundamentalism at the global level, while the aged are kept alive through artificial means for years beyond their physical limitations; tens of millions of babies are mercilessly killed in the wombs of mothers. Both bring money. The result is that the percentage of young and physically capable men and women is becoming increasingly less in the world population.

 

Instead of using the Population Day for raising communal temperature, the governments and the communities must work for reducing the global temperature by focusing on health-friendly economic policies and educational empowerment of all.

***

Dr Javed Jamil is a thinker and writer with over twenty books including his latest, A Systematic Study of the Holy Qur’ān”. He can be contacted at Email: [email protected].

Post Disclaimer

Disclaimer: Blaming Muslims for population explosion: Little truth, more propaganda - Views expressed by writers in this section are their own and do not necessarily reflect Latheefarook.com point-of-view

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.