World Population Day, simply centres on the necessity and magnitude of issues related to the escalating population.
India is a multi cultural-multi lingual nation with an overabundance of religious days and festivals being observed throughout the year. Along with the already existing list, the celebration of Father’s Day, Mother Day, Valentine’s Day, Friendship day has also become fashionable. The adolescents love to rejoice on the days like Rose day, Hug day, and Chocolate day to mark new relationships.
Apart from all the above days the world also celebrates days on a global level like International day for women and World environment day etc. In sync with this, very few people are aware that 11th July is celebrated as “World Population day “globally.
World Population Day was started by the then Governing Council of the United Nations Development Programme in 1989, a result of the concern created by the Day of Five Billion, which was observed on 11 July 1987.
“Genuinely in western countries they have limited festivals and that is the main reason they have to think of more occasions to meet and celebrate so they have actually invented these days but in India we already are bogged down with the never ending jayantis and festivals. It’s more important to talk about vital days with a cause like the ‘World Population day. If we ask people around, I am sure only 1 out of 20 must be aware of it, may be less,” shares in Sumeet Swain studying Architecture.
The theme for this year is; “Family Planning is a Human Right”, because this year marks the 50th anniversary of the 1968 International Conference on Human Rights, where family planning for the first time was confirmed as a human right around the world.
“My slogan for today and always was celebrate World Population Day to enjoy lesser crowd in future. Every city has become overcrowded. Only few years back you reached Nandankanan in 30 minutes but today even though we have better roads and faster cars the ride takes you 10 times more because of the stream of never ending cars around you. If this is the case in Bhubaneswar, one cannot imagine the traffic issues in metropolitan cities. This is all because of the huge population which is burgeoning every day”, feels Shantanu Ratha, working in the corporate sector.
The rise in population has indirectly increased inflation, corruption to get resources that are not easily available and the struggle to get access to the basic amenities like water and fresh air. The cities have become polluted and the environment very harmful to live because of the paucity of space to live.
Nandita Behera, teaching in a local school says, “The population is increasing but only in the under privileged and slum strata of the society where the parents are unable to provide the basic needs to the children. The children end up as child labourers or get into petty crimes. In educated families many young couples choose to stay child less by choice as they are apprehensive of parenting and do not want to take a break in their lucrative careers. As civil society, it’s our duty to try and curb this population explosion, which is a burning issue”.
Some very interesting slogans this World Population day were:
‘Save the earth from over-exploitation caused by over population’
‘Adopt a child instead of giving birth to your own child’
‘Control overpopulation to remain away from starvation’
‘Control the population to maintain the happy life’
‘World Population Day aware us to raise voice against overpopulation’
‘It is difficult to reduce the population however not impossible’
‘Take the pledge to control population’
So what are you waiting for; take your pick and select one Slogan to spread awareness on the harmful effects of the rapidly growing population on the future generation who will have to put in a great effort to access even the basic needs to stay alive.
It’s more essential to spend some time to observe and create awareness on significant issues, together with the celebrations going right through the year.
(Aditi is a freelance writer and pursues interest in the area of social issues)