The Uttar Pradesh Population Policy 2021-2030 was unveiled on World Population Day on July 11, 2021 by Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath to steady the growing population in the state and reduce maternal and infant deaths in a time-bound manner while bringing down the gross fertility rate among women to 2.1 by 2026 and to 1.9 by 2030.
Uttar Pradesh is India’s most populous state with a population of around 220 million. Uttar Pradesh first launched its population policy in 2000.
The new policy aims to decrease the Total Fertility Rate from 2.7 to 2.1 by 2026 and 1.7 by 2030; increase Modern Contraceptive Prevalence Rate from 31.7 to 45 by 2026 and 52 by 2030; increase male methods of contraception use from 10.8 to 15.1 by 2026 and 16.4 by 2030; decrease Maternal Mortality Rate from 197 to 150 to 98 and Infant Mortality Rate from 43 to 32 to 22 and Under 5 Infant Mortality Rate from 47 to 35 to 25.
In the 40-page policy document released by the state, it is mentioned that attempts would be made to ensure there is a population balance among various communities in the state. Extensive campaigns would be run in communities, groups, and geographical areas where fertility rates were higher.
The Uttar Pradesh government will give promotions, increments, concessions in housing schemes and others perks to employees who adhere to population control norms, and have two or less children.
“Public servants who adopt the two-child norm will get two additional increments during the entire service, maternity or as the case may be, paternity leave of 12 months, with full salary and allowances and three percent increase in the employer’s contribution fund under the National Pension Scheme,” according to UP government’s draft population control bill.
The draft bill also states that people having more than two children in the state will be debarred from contesting local bodies polls, applying for government jobs or receiving any kind of subsidy.
For those who are not government employees and still contribute towards keeping the population in check, will get benefits in like rebates in taxes on water, housing, home loans etc.
If the parent of a child opts for vasectomy, he/she will be eligible for free medical facilities till the age of 20.
The Uttar Pradesh government plans to set up a state population fund to implement the measures. The draft bill also asks the state government to introduce population control as compulsory subject in all secondary schools.
The provision of this legislation shall apply to a married couple where the boy is not less than 21 years of age and the girl is not less than 18. The UP law commission, which has prepared the draft bill, said that the policy will be voluntary – it will not be enforced upon anyone.