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India's Population Growth Problem And Its Consequences

2187 words - 9 pages

The population of India is in trouble. They are facing widespread overpopulation
and the second largest AIDS epidemic in the world. The objective is to point out the
differences in Indian and US population compositions, total fertility rates, economic
conditions, disease control policies, growth, and literacy rates. These comparisons will
help to put India's population problems in perspective. Together, these two countries
house the second and third largest populations on the Earth. To put it in perspective, of
the 6.1 billion people who exist on earth, seventeen percent are either Indians or
Americans (Haub, 3). If India continues to experience high growth rates and spreading
disease they will be in ruins.

Composition Differences
The population of the United States is currently around 285 million people (Haub,
4). Americans range from newborn to those who have been around since the last century.
Their religions range from Protestant, Catholic, Jewish to Muslim. The population
consists of ages: 0-14 years: 21.25%, 15-64 years: 66.11%, and 65 years and over:
12.64% (World Factbook, US). The composition of India is much different than that of
the US. The culture is made up of mainly Buddhists, and Muslims, while there are other
religions which are practiced in a smaller percentage. Their population consists of over 1
billion people which is approximately 3.5 times the size of the United States, and which
makes India the second largest population in the world right behind China. Their age
structure is broken up into categories 0-14 years: 34%, 15-64 years: 62%, 65 years and
over: 4% (World Factbook, IN).

Both countries age groups are evenly distributed male/female. The exceptions
are, in the US, the oldest ages 65+ are composed of 40% male and 60% female. In India
the exception is in the 0-14 category where, there are considerably more males. This is
important to mention because there have been accusations of selective abortion of
females based on a preference for males. The age structure in the US is well distributed
between young and old with most of the population being between 15-64 years of age,
the ?working age,? and the number that most countries use to determine unemployment
levels. As can be seen there are a large number of working aged Americans, this benefits
the US economy and provides the country with a large resource pool. Notice that in
India the population does consist of a large working age class. The difference is more
than a third of the country is under the age of fourteen.

Fertility Differences
In the United States there is a total fertility rate of around 2.1 and an infant
mortality rate of 7.1 deaths per every 1000 children born up to age 1 year (Haub, 4). The
children produced under this fertility rate grow up to populate the US to the tune of
seventy-seven people per square mile of land, with a life expectancy average of 77 years.
The large Indian youth population points to an...

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