India's population rises slowly during past decade

By: Calvin Swanson

India's population has risen to 1.21 billion people due to its population increase of more than 181 million people in the last decade.

The increase of 1.21 billion people, which is about the entire population of Pakistan, makes India the world's second most populated nation only to China, according to a NY Times article. The past decade's population growth was 17.6 percent, which is down from 21.5 percent from 1991-2001. India's growth percentage is the lowest since India's independence in 1947, according to a Washington Post article.

Despite the growth in the country, there are concerns amongst the heavily-populated country. The Washington Post reports Indian citizens' preference of keeping sons over daughters is causing abortions of female fetuses and infants. The ratio of girls to boys for children age 6 and younger has dropped to 914 girls per 1000 boys, the lowest in India's history.

Indians prefer to raise male children over females because they see daughters as a financial burden, according to the Washington Post article. The trend is more popular in the educated states such as Punjab and Gujarat.

Despite the birth concerns, the NY Times article states female literacy rates are up, and the country's overall literacy rate, 74 percent, is up 9 percent.


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