• Aditya Sharma

World Population Day 2020: Date, Significance and History

When the world’s population reached 5 billion mark on 11 July 1987, it was observed as the “Five Billion Day” by the United Nations. Taking this as inspiration, the Governing Council of the United Nations Development Program for the first time in 1989 launched an initiative program to observe 11 July as the World Population Day every year to garner world’s attention towards the urgency and importance of population issues. As the population of world is increasing day by day at a very fast pace. So, World Population Day assumes paramount importance because it highlights the problems of increasing population and raises awareness about the effects of over-population on the environment and planet. This year world will mark its 31st Population Day.

World Population Day 2020: Theme

Every year there is a specific theme for World Population Day which is based on some social issue. This year the theme of World Population Day 2020 amid the Covid-19 pandemic is “To raise the awareness about safeguarding sexual and reproductive health needs and vulnerabilities of women and girls”. This is timely important and significant because many pregnant women succumb due to poor reproductive healthcare.

World Population Day 2020 focuses on multiple challenges i.e. health, economic and social parameters. The parameters that people are facing across the world due to COVID-19 pandemic. Reproductive health, family planning and mental health are the other issues that have taken a backseat as medical resources have been stretched due to the pandemic.

India’s Concerns

The concerns of India on the World Population Day is that between the Census of 2001 and 2011, the country has added 18% more people to its population which is around 181 million. According to the Population Division of the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs, India’s population is expected to add nearly 273 million people in the next three decades and surpass the China’s population within the next 7 years. So, in this context, the importance of sexual and reproductive health of women and Planned Parenthood on World Population Day 2020 underscores some of major concerns for the country which are –

. Birth Rate and Death Rate

. Poverty and Illiteracy

. Family Planning and Other Social Factors

. Total Fertility Rate

. High Youth Unemployment and Demographic Disaster

Therefore, the World Population Day 2020, is an opportune time to discuss all these important issues and to raise awareness about safeguarding sexual and reproductive health needs and vulnerabilities of women and girls during crises like Covid-19 pandemic. So that the corrective measures can be taken in order to overcome these challenges towards the vision of “New India” and an “Atma Nirbhar Bharat Abhiyaan”.

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