Manipur State Population Commission: An antidote

(Contd from Saturday issue)
The Terms of Reference of the National Commission on Population are as under:
a) To review, monitor and give directions for the implementation of the National Population Policy with a view to achieve population stabilisation by promoting synergy between demographic, educational, environmental and developmental programmes.
b) The National Commission on Population (NCP) shall promote inter-sectoral coordination in planning and implementation across government agencies of the Central and State Governments.
c) The NCP would facilitate the development of a vigorous people’s movement in support of the National efforts at Population stabilisation.
d) The NCP would facilitate initiatives to improve performance in the demographically weaker States in the country.
In brief, in the National level, the commission objectives are to stabilize the population of India by achieving National Socio-demographic Goals for 2010. But in Manipur, the situation is quite unique and different from the National level, attributing with many annoying demographic phenomenon like influx of migrants and its manifestation; and spurt of demographic imbalances in terms of size, growth, fertility, spatial mobility, socio-economic instability, etc., amongst the different sections of the society. Henceforth, to achieve population stabilisation, streamline migration flow and manage the existing demographic repercussions in the State, inclusion of some more pertinent objectives in the Terms of Reference of MSPC is highly obligatory. The proposed Terms of Reference of the MSPC submitted by JCILPS, Manipur is reproduced herewith.
Terms of Reference of the Commission:
The specific Terms of Reference shall be categorized into short term (immediate) and long term as under:
I. Short Terms:
1) To prepare a white paper on population influx in the State within one year.
2) To prepare a Manipur State Population Policy on the analogy of the National Population Policy in cooperated with some specific objectives so as to curb the present high growth rate due to uncheck influx and to bring population stabilization in the State.
II. Long Terms:
1) The Manipur State Population Commission (MSPC) shall review, monitor and give directions for the implementation of the National Population Policy with a view to achieve population stabilisation by promoting synergy among the demographic, educational, environmental and developmental programmes.
2) To promote inter-sectorial coordination in planning and implementation of the State Government’s agencies like Education, Health & Family Welfare, Social Welfare, etc.
3) To facilitate the development of a vigorous people’s movement in support of the National efforts on population stabilisation.
4) To conduct ongoing research on various demographic, socio-economic, health & environment, geo-political aspects of population growth especially on the three demographic components viz., fertility, mortality & migration so as establishing an exhaustive scientific demographic profile of the State (which to be updated periodically).
5) To assess the problems and issues of demographic imbalance so as to provide remedial measures towards peace, harmony, tranquility and speedy & equitable development.
6) To identify demographic and socio-economics profiles, whether productive or non-productive groups, of the migrants.
7) To make aware the people about the demographic aftermath and how to combat it.
8) To recommend and advise on any population related matter periodically, based on scientific findings, to the Government of Manipur for effective implementation.
The dual crucial tasks of the commission are firstly, to prepare a Manipur State Population Policy and secondly, to find out real picture along with profile of migrants population and its trend in the state. Out of the eight proposed long terms of reference, the first three are as same as the Terms of Reference of the National Population Commission dealing with the population stabilisation by achieving National Socio-demographic Goals for 2010. While remaining five long terms of reference (4 – 8) are very much relating to the state issues. The general objective is that the commission has constantly to conduct research works on various spectrum of population of the state so as to highlight real pictures. Based on the findings, the scientific remedial measures would be developed and these would also be made aware to the masses. Finally, commission’s findings and suggestions are recommended to the Government of Manipur for implementation.
People misconception:
Unity is the strength; knowledge is the power; and unutilized population is the liability. Knowledge of the society determines its quality and power, but not by its population. The large population means large demand and large demand involves extortion of resources including natural and human. The Manipur is constraint of natural resources with very limited geographical areas as against an overall high population density (including migrants) of 128 per sq. km. At the same time its human resource (population) could neither be utilized properly nor be explored. There is no unity rather mistrust among the people of Manipur which may be crafted by man-made multidimensional social milieus. Once an issue, either good or bad, is raised by one group, another group objects it. It is common phenomenon and catchwords in Manipuri society. In narrow perception, each community, especially minority, has attributed in its mindset that how does its community dominant the others. So does they choose population enhancement as one of the weapons without realizing the consequences of population explosion. Increasing population means sharing resources in terms of food, settlement, service sector, trade and economy, politics so and so forth. Once enhancement of population crossed the saturated point, the consequent rebounds to its community that is the naturally phenomenon. The situation of Jiribam is the living example in this regards and the same situation is creeping in other districts, especially in some hill districts of the state. It is fact that in one community especially urban elite Meitei, the number of children per couple is hardly two in number now while their counterpart others have above five. It is also a clear evidence of demographic imbalance creating imbalance population growth rate through ethical line. (to be contd)


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