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Overpopulation in India

In: Social Issues

Submitted By jicz04
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Overpopulation in India, Causes, consequences, solutions

Felipe Benjumea
Juan Casares

Overpopulation occurs when the number of people living in an area exceeds the limit the area is capable of having. In other words the relationship between the human population and its local environment is unbalanced. This is problematic because as individuals, we rely on a local area for subsistence; therefore, we are limited by the productivity of a given area. If productivity does not meet our demands, nature will be in charge of balancing the scale. However, we as humans are animals of reason. Therefore we are capable, through technology and culture, of living in an area that should, in theory, be unable to support us. And what makes it worst is the fact that, regardless of political (countries) and geographical barriers, we all share a common home called mother earth. Therefore overpopulation affects the individual area suffering from it, and, because of globalization, the rest of the world. However, the countries most affected by extreme population are of course the countries suffering from it. In our world there are many countries, principally, Asian countries that reside under this “deplorable” conditions of overpopulation. To understand overpopulation, it is necessary to analyze the underlying reasons behind it, the consequences of it, and most importantly the solutions for it. Like mentioned above, culturally and geographically, Asian countries are more prone to suffer from overpopulation This report will analyze India’s situation, from the cultural reason of overpopulation, to the attempts to solve, and, if possible, eradicate it.
India is a country located in the southeast region of Asia. 28 states and 7 union territories form it. India doesn’t have an official national language but the language most commonly spoken is Hindi, spoken by almost 43% of the population. According to the U.N, over one fourth of the population in India lives on less than a dollar a day (worse than acute poverty which is 1 euro or 1.25 dollars a month) leaving thousands of deaths a year due to malnutrition and starvation. India´s geographical region is an overwhelming 3.287 million km squared. The region is obviously enormous, however, the rate at which people are born is even more incredible. Every two seconds a baby is born, Nevertheless, due to cultural, economical, and social problems, every three minutes a person dies. However, this is not enough to halt the exponential growth in population that the country is over going. The rates of nativity and mortality are unbelievable and quite hard to grasp. For this reason, the population, and the population growth in India is astonishing. According to the World Bank- United States census bureau, the population in India today is about 1.241 billion. In comparison, the population in the USA (which occupies a bigger geographical region) is of only 311.6 million (world bank-united states census bureau). The strains that such a population size cause on a region are huge.
The causes of overpopulation in any given region are usually political, social religious, and most importantly, cultural. India is not the exception According to the national Indian census; at least 80.5% of India´s population is Hindu, the rest being, Christian, muslin, Jain, and Sikhs, among others. This is important to mention because the basic building block of Hindu society is the extended family, meaning, they value big families with many children. More so, extended families usually consist of 3 or more generations living together. From those facts it is easy to deduce that one of the main causes of Indian overpopulation are cultural believes. If Indians are having more children, their population, if mortality rates stay fixed, will obviously increase. Another major cause of overpopulation in India is of a socio-economic condition, meaning, it involves societal reasons and economic reason. As mentioned before, poverty in India is common, very common in fact. It is estimated that about 35% of the population lives under extreme poverty, below the line of poverty of 1 euro a day, and, the majority of people live under two dollars a day. That is insane. For these “economic” reasons, families usually attempt to maximize their daily money. An easy way to do so is by extending the family; the more children they have, the more money they can get. In other words, people want to have more children to increase productivity and sustainability. Taking this into consideration, population growth becomes exponential, even if the mortality rates increase. And in fact, mortality rates also increase. Overpopulation damages ecosystems and environments to the point of exhaustion. Therefore due to poor sanity and lack of resources, mortality rates also grow. Families attempt to combat this mortality rates by having even more children. This becomes a type of cycle that is difficult to eradicate. It becomes even more difficult to eradicate if one takes into consideration India´s low level of education (caused by poverty and corruption). Practices like safe sex or birth control are not implemented in the society because the low level of education and culture (religion) doesn’t allow it. These things also add on to the overpopulation problem. It is possible to conclude that India’s biggest causes of overpopulation are cultural, social, economical, and, political.
The consequences of overpopulation are quite devastating for countries suffering from it, and for the world of course. Overpopulation in India is extremely debilitating for the Indian society for a number of reasons. In first place, overpopulation has a high impact on the ecosystem Large amount of resources are needed to support such a big population. Resources from within the geographical region are not enough for obvious reason; therefore, importation becomes a common practice. Plenty of species become endangered species because people hunt for survival (unlike western countries were people usually hunt recreationally). An example is seen in the indian tigers, which are in risk of becoming extinct due to hunting and a low gene pool ( Another consequence of overpopulation is bad sanitation. The more people living in a reduced space, the more it will affect sanitation. This lack of sanitation causes a rise in diseases and, thanks to the poverty, a rise in mortality rates. The lack of resources previously mentioned also causes malnutrition. All in all, the consequence of overpopulation is a bad quality of life.
Overpopulation is bad for a country; however, it can be lowered (not eradicated). There are a number of solutions that can help prevent the expansion of overpopulation. Some of the solutions that India could apply are the following: First, they could decrease birth rates by increasing education. Education is primordial in the functioning of a country. Therefore, by increasing education (education society) India could undoubtedly tackle their overpopulation problem. One example would be by teaching people about safe sex. Another solution that India could apply is one that China uses. That is, decreasing help to families with more than one child. Another solution that could be applicable is making contraceptives more available for society and, linked with education, teaching people why it is important to use them. Birth control is in a similar level. Although is not as culturally accepted as in western society, if Indian women started to apply birth control, they could help ease the problem of overpopulation. The solutions previously mentioned are just a handful of examples that any country could utilize to reduce problems related to overpopulation. However there are many more solutions and there is obviously hope for India, and for the world.


Consequences of Over-population in India. (n.d.). Legal Services India - Laws in India, Supreme court judgments, lawyers. Retrieved June 18, 2013, from

Overpopulation in India. (n.d.). Overpopulation in India. Retrieved June 17, 2013, from

Overpopulation of India. (n.d.). Kevin and Betty's homepage. Retrieved June 18, 2013, from

Consequences of Over-population in India. (n.d.). Legal Services India - Laws in India, Supreme court judgments, lawyers. Retrieved June 18, 2013, from

alvinrong. (n.d.). Overpopulation in India - College Essays - Alvinrong. Free Term Papers, Research Papers, Essays, Book Notes | Retrieved June 18, 2013, from

Facts about India - Overpopulation-India. (n.d.). Overpopulation-India - Home. Retrieved June 18, 2013, from

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