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Re: -- Population... what do we do there?

Dear Parag,

If you wish to bring in any thing draconian, like interfering (even by not
forcing) in the individual family's choice to have children, you had
better bring along with you in the debate a tremendous amount of research
showing how this can be done and how this helps. 

The correlations between education, infant mortality, income, and
population are not only empirical ones, but solid theoretical ones. We can
discuss further, if you like. You might like to begin by reading Easterlin
and Julian Simon, whose books are listed at: 


In my firm view (and I can debate this), we do not need any Ministry of
Population. The Para in the Manifesto makes it clear that we must
encourage and support family planning, and so on, but not by anything like
a two-child policy. Choice. Freedom. I value these far more. And I think
people will always decide in their self-interest to have lesser children,
as has not only been happening so far, but will continue to happen. If
they have more children, that is in their self-interest. We cannot
interfere with that choice since we created their poverty in the first


On Wed, 20 May 1998, Parag Bhatt wrote:

> For the Short term I do not feel that it is advisable to merge this
> with the Education.
> Something HAS to be done in the short term(s) about Population.

> This ministry's main goal should be to take necessary steps to curtail
> the growth of population.
> Now our population grows by about 2.5% per anum.  This ministry should
> formulate its own agenda (May be we can discuss this on this list).
> It should address some issues like
> Enforcing one family not more than two children. (Not forcing like China)
> Making sure that people are aware of the consequences of large families.
> Making sure that People do get access to all the new family planning
> technologies at very affordable costs.