On July 9, the Uttar Pradesh State Law Commission presented the first draught of a bill aimed at population control, asking for public opinions within 10 days, or by July 19. The plan includes incentives for people who have two or fewer children in their families. Disincentives have also been established for those who do not follow the two-child rule. The draught bill, named Uttar Pradesh Population (Control, Stabilization, and Welfare) Bill, 2021, was released at a time when Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath stated that the government would introduce a new population policy for the years 2021-2030.
WHAT THE DRAFT SAYS?
After the law takes effect, a person with more than two children will be ineligible for a number of privileges, including the ability to:
1. Run for local authority or any other local self-government position.
2. Submit an application for state government positions.
3. Ineligible for advancement in government positions.
4. Those who are ineligible receive no government assistance.
5. Ration card Units are limited to four.
6. Disqualification from government-sponsored welfare programmes.
The following benefits will be offered to public personnel under the jurisdiction of the State Government who embrace the two-child norm by voluntarily sterilising themselves or their spouses:
1. Two more increments during their whole service.
2. As may be prescribed, a subsidy towards the acquisition of a plot, home site, or built house from the Housing Board Development Authority.
3. Refund on utility charges, such as water, electricity, and water home tax, if applicable.
4. A 12-month maternity or paternity leave, with full pay and benefits, is available.
5. The spouse receives free health care and insurance coverage.
6. 3% in the national pension fund’s employer contribution fund.
ONE CHILD NORM
A public official or ordinary citizen who adopts a kid in a typical village receives additional privileges, including:
1. free healthcare and insurance coverage for the child until the age of 20.
2. Admission to all educational institutions is given preference to single children.
3. Education is free up to the point of graduation.
4. Scholarships for higher education in the case of a girl kid, as well as priority in government jobs for a single child.
If the single child is a boy, a couple living below the poverty line who has only one child and undergoes voluntary sterilisation will be eligible for a one-time payment of Rs. 80,000, and Rs. 1 lakh if the single child is a girl.
STEPS TO BE TAKEN BY GOVERNMENT
It is the government’s responsibility to make population control a mandatory subject in all secondary schools. It is the government’s responsibility to ensure that contraceptives are offered at reasonable prices in all state sub–health centres.
REASON FOR THE BILL?
The Commission, led by Justice Aditya Nath Mittal, stated that there were limited ecological and economic resources available in UP, and that it was necessary to manage and stabilise the population in order to promote sustainable development with more fair distribution.
The state’s overall fertility rate is at 2.7 percent, although it should ideally be less than 2.1 percent, according to a government spokesman. Because the NFHS-05 is expected to be released soon, the goal will be divided into two phases: 2026 and 2030.
According to the proposal, the provision shall take effect one year after the date of publication in the gazette.
Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma stated last month that his government would progressively introduce a two-child policy for benefits accessible under state-funded initiatives.