The present article dwell upon the Population Control Bill, 2020 which Senior Advocate A.M. Singhvi intended to introduce in Rajya Sabha which puts forth the idea to adopt two child policy for the Country, in order to control the escalating population in our country.
Shiv Sena Rajyasabha MP Anil Desai in February 2020 moved a private member’s bill proposing incentives to promote a two- child norm. Desai has proposed that the Constitution be amended to introduce a new provision incentivizing those adhering to a two-child. The amendment to article 47A was proposed by this bill, which make provision for amendment to article 47A as follows: “The state shall promote small family norms by offering incentives in taxes, employment, education etc to its people who keep their family limited to two children and shall withdraw every concession from and deprive such incentives to those not adhering to small family norm, to keep the growing population under control.”
Senior Advocate and Congress leader Abhishek Manu Singhvi is planning to introduce a legislation to foster a two-child policy for the country. (Population Control Bill, 2020). Singhvi had initially announced his plan to introduce the Population Control Bill during 2019’s winter session of Parliament. The Bill is now going to be introduced in the Rajya Sabha during the current session.
- The bill states its objective in Long title/preamble as “to provide for measures to control the population in the country and for matters connected therewith and incidental thereto.” The bill provides for definition of “appropriate Government”, “committee”, “employee of the Union Government”, “fund”, “prescribed”. The bill states that it is applicable only to married couple.
- Section 5 provides for setting up district level monitoring committee to be known as District Population Stabilisation Committee in hundred districts with the highest recorded population growth rates to fulfill purpose of this Act, by appropriate government defined in the Act. It further states that the committee shall consists of (a) the Chief Medical Officer of the district; (b) the District Collector; and (c) one representative from each Panchayat Samiti in the district. The responsibility of the committee is to take steps to encourage the use of contraceptives and control the population growth rate in their concerned district.
- Section 6 of the bill provide for benefits to couple who have only one child, voluntarily undergo sterilization/operation by the appropriate government which includes preference to the single child for admission in the institutes of higher education, preference to such child for selection in government job and such other benefits.
- Section 7 of the bill states that if both husband and wife in case of a married couple who are living below poverty line, and having only one child, voluntarily undergo sterilization/operation, such couple in addition to benefits of section 6, shall be eligible for payment from the central government of sixty thousand rupees, if the single child is a boy or one lakh rupees if the single child is a girl.
- Section 8 of the bill states that both the husband and wife in the case of a married couple having more than two children, shall be debarred from contesting in Lok Sabha, State Legislature, and Panchayat elections; getting elected to the Rajya Sabha, the State Legislature, and similar elective bodies; getting promotion in government services; applying to ‘Group A’ jobs under the Central and State Governments; receiving any kind of Government subsidy, in case the married couple falls in the Above Poverty Line category.
- Section 9 states that the appropriate Government shall introduce a compulsory subject relating to population control in all senior secondary schools in States where the average fertility rate is more than the replacement level of 2.1 children per woman. Section 10 made provision for constitution of national population stabilization fund by the Central Government. The money collected under the fund shall be redistributed to the states and union territories that have implemented reforms to control population and have been able to significantly reduce their population growth rate, in such manner as may be prescribed.
- Section 12 of the Act provides provision for central government employees. It states that all employees of the Central Government shall submit an undertaking in writing to the respective appointing authority after one year of commencement of this Act that they shall not procreate more than two children, with proviso that the employees who already have more than two children at the commencement of the Act shall submit undertaking that they shall not procreate any more children.
- Section 13 provides that the central government when recruiting employees shall give preference to candidate having two or less than two living children. Section 14 provides for power to make rules and section 15 provides for power to override laws.
Edited by Pragash Boopal
Approved & Published – Sakshi Raje