Sikkim chief minister Prem Singh Tamang has announced an increment for women employees of the state with two or more children. For the larger section of women not enrolled with the state government, financial incentives will soon be declared.
There has been an alarming decrease in the state’s fertility rate, which has come down from 2.5 percent in 1999 to 1.1 percent in 2021.
“For those who adopt IVF (in-vitro fertilisation) to increase the population, we will provide monetary support of Rs 3 lakh. Earlier, there were incentives for those who supported in reducing the population growth; we want to change this now. Women government employees with more than two children shall get an increment. For mothers who have more than two children and are not government employees, we shall provide financial help to them. We will soon come out with an order. We are worried and seeking reasons behind the steep decline (in fertility rate). If we do not arrest the trend now, we will be facing bigger problems in future. Decline in indigenous populations will threaten the prominence of the Sikkimese,” Tamang said.
According to the 2011 Census, Sikkim has a population of 6.11 lakh. The population was 5.41 lakh as per the 2001 Census. Sikkim has 6,10,577 people – 3,23,070 males and 2,87,507 females – as per the 2011 Census. In 2001, there were 2,88,484 males and 2,52,367 females. The total population growth in this decade was 12.89 percent, while it was 32.98 percent in the previous decade. The population of Sikkim formed 0.05 percent of India in 2011. In 2001, the figure was the same.
The Sikkim government’s decision comes at a time when states like Uttar Pradesh and Assam are supporting policies preventing people with more than two children from receiving government jobs or incentives.
Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar had recently pointed out that “if a girl is matriculate, the fertility rate on an average comes down to 2 percent, and if she has completed school education, it further falls to 1.7 percent nationally”. In Bihar, the fertility rate for women who have completed Class XII, is 1.6 percent, which is less than the national average, he added.
Read all the Latest India News here