Reading Time: 10 mins India is currently thriving because of the young population and is moving to become the most populous country in the next 7 years. However, the ageing population is growing faster than previously thought and may have a 20% population of 60 years and above by 2050. Various other studies including Economic Survey 2018-19 points out that India may face an increasingly ageing population just like developed nations like Germany and France. It is the duty of the state to take care of the senior citizens and it is ingrained within the Indian tradition to take care of them. However, with the increasing industrialisation and westernisation, many senior citizens are left vulnerable and India is among the countries that are unfavourable for the old age population. Laws and welfare schemes are helping them to only a certain extent due to implementation limitations. With the growing old age population, the government must take necessary steps so that the senior citizens are respected and can lead a dignified life.
Reading Time: 7 mins The union cabinet recently approved the Medical Termination of Pregnancy (Amendment) Bill, 2020. The move is expected to liberalise the practice of abortion and is long overdue. The move has been called for by many women’s rights groups and even the Supreme Court. The move is also significant as liberal abortion laws have been linked with a decline in unsafe abortions and abortion rates in general.
Reading Time: 6 mins On December 13, 2019, the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment had announced its intention to extend the deadline of the Accessible India Campaign to March 2020 due to its slow progress. The Central Advisory Board (CAB) chaired by social justice and empowerment minister took this decision. Failure to provide for the accessibility to persons with disability is showing the government’s negligence to provide for the inclusive growth and equal opportunity to all of the Indian citizens.
Reading Time: 7 mins The deadly new strain of coronavirus, 2019-novel Coronavirus, has taken the lives of over 130 people in China and has infected thousands more across the world. Wuhan, the epicentre of the epidemic, along with the nearby areas, has been quarantined by the Chinese government to curb the spreading of the disease. India is currently working to pre-empt the spread of the 2019 novel Coronavirus. As of now, no positive cases have been reported in India. Despite the rapid spread of the novel virus and it poses a high global risk to the world at large, the World Health Organisation has refused to declare it a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC).
Reading Time: 8 mins Non-Governmental Organisations, for a long time, have played a significant role in a variety of fields ranging from disaster relief to advocacy of the marginalised and disadvantaged communities. They are currently a major part of the civil society, which bring rapid change and social transformation within the country. However, in recent decades, India has been a difficult environment for the NGOs due to vague laws that are stopping them from questioning the unjust government policies, discrimination, advocating for the rights of the marginalised communities and other deprived groups. Successive Indian governments have often tried to curb their activities. This is due to the limitations of Indian laws. Taking measures to ensure NGOs’ transparency and accountability through just laws and mechanisms can allow these organisations to work with the government, leading to the promotion of democratic values and social justice at the grass-root level.
Reading Time: 7 mins Child marriage is a global problem. Around 15 million girls become victims of child marriage every year across the world. The UN says that more than 21% of young women and 4% young men in the world were married before they turn 18. At present, 650 million girls and women alive were married before their 18th birthday. Africa has the most recorded marriages – more than 70% of its girl population. India contributes about 40% of child marriages across the globe. It is a global issue that is plaguing Nepal, Middle East, Bangladesh and Pakistan. It is an issue even in developed countries like USA and UK. Massive efforts have been undertaken by countries and the UN to prevent child marriages. In the last decade, the proportion of women who were married as children decreased by 15%. Around 25 million child marriages were prevented in the last decade. South Asia showed the largest decline in the prevalence of child marriages. India too has seen a significant decline in the prevalence of child marriage. However, more efforts are necessary to achieve the Sustainable Development Goal within 2030.
Reading Time: 6 mins According to the recently released Sample Registration System (SRS), India’s Maternal Mortality Ratio has declined from 130 per 1 lakh live births in 2014-16 to 122 per 1 lakh live births in 2015-17. This is of significance as it means that about 2,000 maternal deaths have been prevented each year. This may be due to the improving accessibility and affordability to healthcare and also due to increasing awareness about the benefits of the public health system.
Reading Time: 8 mins The J.K Lone Hospital in Kota, Rajasthan is seeing an increasing number of deaths of infants. Amid the outrage caused by the infants’ death, disturbing figures of similar deaths emerged from Jodhpur and Bikaner as well as Rajkot and Ahmedabad in Gujarat. Reports indicate that the cause for these increasing infant deaths is the poor quality of infrastructure in public hospitals. The low-quality public healthcare has a huge impact on the nation’s Infant mortality rate – the indicator of the quality of a country’s healthcare system.