India likely to reach replacement level fertility in 2019: Nadda

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New Delhi, July 11 (IANS) Union Health Minister J.P. Nadda on Wednesday said India is likely to reach close to the replacement level fertility of 2.1 in the next one year much ahead of the 2025 deadline of the government for Sustainable Development Goals (SDG).

“The Total Fertility Rate (TFR) which was 2.9 in 2005 has come down to 2.3 in 2016 and if we calculate the rate now it has reached 2.2. I hope by next year on World Population Day, this would come near to 2.1,” he said at a workshop on ‘Population Stabilisation: A right and responsibility’ organised by the Health and Family Welfare Ministry and Jansankhya Sthirata Kosh (JSK) (National Population Stabilisation Fund) on World Population Day.

Nadda said the steep fall in TFR was brought about by the ministry which developed a strategy in 2016 and set up Mission Parivar Vikas that identified the most vulnerable districts and drew micro plans for each of these select districts.

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“Mission Parivar Vikas which is a comprehensive program focused on 146 districts in seven states where the TFR was more than three. Micro planning of these districts was carried out keeping in mind factors like socio, economic and education of these districts.

“I said that this policy program should not be made in Nirman Bhawan. It should be made in those districts involving the people there. In three months the officials came up with micro planning for each of these districts which is being implemented,” he said.

Currently, as the country’s TFR is reaching 2.2, a total of 24 states or Union Territories have a TFR level below 2.1, nine states have TFR between three and 2.2 and there are three states that have TFR more than three including Bihar at 3.3, down from 4.4, Nadda said.

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“When you are able to detect where the problem is you are able to solve it also. I have asked the ministry to collect the figures from MPV and restrategise to find what else needs focus. It fell so sharply because we focused on it and we can further bring it down,” he said.

Today, India has got a very robust system of mother, child and adolescent healthcare, which has ultimately resulted in reducing MMR, IMR and under-5 mortality, which is reducing more faster than the world pace, he added.

–IANS

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