There is unrest in the world. Whether it is political, civil, educational, social, labour or economical, the most part of the world (unfortunately mainly developing countries) is the victim of one or other form of the unrest. Many of us are unwilling or unable to face and accept the reasons of prevailing instability and turmoil.
Just see around, we can witness the overstretched natural resources, lack of access to education whereas the feelings of peace, safety and happiness like some fantasy or out of the world things.We, the humans are responsible for such catastrophic situation all around. How? By increasing population on a very rapid pace. On one side, it is obvious that our planet is already struggling to bear the current burden of human existence. While on the other, increasing human beings in every year, at every minute and every second faster than any period in human history further creating the undesirable living conditions for the world and for their own selves.
Nearly 220,000 people are added to the planet every day - mostly in poor and developing nations. There is a medley of too many people in Pakistan, India, Bangladesh, China, Zimbabwe, Indonesia, Nigeria, Egypt and many other countries. No matter how much we neglect or ignore the over population but this is a big issue. It is worthy to note that these highly populated countries are having difficulties coping with their current population and struggling with their economies.Less time, budget and energy is being devoted to control population.
In 2016, Pakistan is still ahead of yearly population growth with 2.0% as compare to 1.2% in India and 1.1% in Bangladesh. Pakistan is at number six as the most populated country and also as a country that depend on others. Despite the family planning programs there is no reduction in the population. In our society, the survival of marriage knot is very much linked with producing a baby within the first year of marriage, and if this first baby is girl, the women is obliged to give birth to boy as soon as possible. According to World Bank data, an average woman in Pakistan is giving birth to more than 4 children. The preference to have male child can increase the number drastically.
Putting aside some known major problems of increasing population like unemployment, inflation, high cost of living, power shortage,our country is facing many unnoticed and ignored peripheral outcomes of over population, such as food and water shortage, noise pollution, increased government debt, high consumption, high wastage, child marriage, child labour, psychological and behavioural problems etc. Unfortunately, the debate does not end here, as there are some hidden concerns as well. A few decades ago,the diseases like high or low blood pressure, heart attack,diabetes and cholesterol level even in young people in '20s and '30s, depression, suicide and social division were out of thought.
Much has been written and debated on the above-mentioned issues but what about the root causes of increasing population. To discuss family planning is still a taboo in many households and families.
Women empowerment is a challenging problem created by increasing population to grasp. The inactivity of 70% of women in economic activities increased their dependency rate. But on the bright side, if we want to see the glass half full, to empower the women could also be a solution to control population directly or indirectly. To educate them will not only increase their financial contribution to the family but also would make them capable for decision-making and to take fruitful steps towards family planning as with less kids they can be more productive for the country.
We are aware of our low literacy rate as well as our awareness level on population. Men feel proud to have more children but not interested enough to educate them and to make them professional and productive.Due to large family, many kids are forced to leave the schools at early age. Zarina’s father has nine children with the eldest one only 14 (Zarina) and youngest one only a few months old. Her father withdrew Zarina from school after just 8 months and married her with 26 years old man against her will. (Witness documentary on Aljazeera.)
Rapid population increase is exerting pressure on existing limited resources that also affects the quality of education in schools. The numbers of students are increasing in one classroom then teachers are unable to pay attention on students properly. Even at primary level, students cannot read or write properly Urdu or English.There are too many graduates and intermediate students with the degrees not demanded in modern professional world or even in labour market.Most of them are doing jobs totally opposite to their degrees. The unemployment is a serious challenge because large families are producing more labourers than leaders and professionals.
The inequality in family is also a negative outcome of increased population.When there are too many people for too few resources, it is obvious that intelligent kids would be ignored. Family size also impacts the attitude towards girls and their education.The psychological problems and domestic violence are also the problems. The girls have to sacrifice their future and education that keep them out of working environment. The small family size would make all to share equally whatever they have. Every child would be a wanted child whether it is a boy or a girl.
Over population is the major cause to make many policy and infrastructural plans ineffective by creating difficulties to implement the state development programs. All the roads, buses, hospitals, schools facilities seem insufficient to cater everyone. The unrestrained population growth can overwhelm any efforts to achieve sustainable future.
A lack of outdoor games, sports activities and recreational activities is also the reason and outcome of increased population. Beside the shortage of sports academies,even parks, forests and green lands are diminishing rapidly. The housing societies are taking their place to cater large population.The houses are now more congested. The more consumption brings more wastage that brings more cleaning problems all over.
The natural environment is also affecting our ways of life adversely with air and water pollution. The growing population always needs more natural and materialistic resources along with space to adjust but unfortunately both of which are running out.
Now, that’s up to all of us to decide why not to think about reducing population and family size, as evidence is everywhere. To make anything effective, our nation needs to change in their stereotype thoughts and in their attitude. There must be a certain limit to that growth.
We can no longer wait and should not wait for any miracle to make our country capable enough to handle the increasing population. We have to stop blaming the policies and government but have to take step on individual level. We need to be aware and educated on the cause and effect of over population. Our decisions and actions will influence the utilisation of existing opportunities for the current generation to make them an engine for economic growth. We need to create a balance between service providers and people benefiting from those services to have an acceptable level of performance and prosperity. If we didn’t do anything now, challenges will remain and increase too in future.