Overpopulation in Pakistan: A Threat Needing Urgent Attention

Limited resources and restricted opportunities with reference to horrifyingly increasing population is among the biggest problems Pakistan is facing. With struggling economy and wobbly economic structure, Pakistan is the 6th most populous country in the world. With being among the countries with the highest fertility rate across the globe.

Pakistan had a population of 33 million in 1950 and was ranked at 14th in the world, however with failed measures to educate people about it and non-effective family planning campaigns, Pakistan stands at 6th today with 210 million population. The first five ranks are occupied by India, USA, China, Brazil, and Indonesia and has surpassed even Japan, Russia, South Korea and Bangladesh.

When it comes to area and land, Pakistan is at 34th position while occupying 0.6% of world area. What’s more harrowing is that Pakistan is at 147th position in terms of Human Development Index. Among these countries, Pakistan also has the highest growth rate of 1.90%. This implies that almost every family in Pakistan has 3.1 children on average.

According to Dr Muhammad Ashraf Chaudhry, Professor of Community Medicine, among all then developmental, economic and security threats Pakistan is facing, ‘Pakistan Explosion’ stands at number one.

With the current growth rate of 1.90%, Pakistan’s population is likely to get doubled in the next 37 years, making it the third most populated country in the world – while land area will remain the same or maybe decrease due to residential plans.

Dr Ashraf also said while talking to a local media news source that the biggest contributing factor in rising population rate is government’s failure to implement effective family planning as our contraceptive prevalence rate is decreasing rather than increasing.

Due to societal taboos, cultural restrictions and lack of awareness, use of modern contraception remain out of question for the majority of Pakistanis. However, with effective execution of awareness drives, it is crucial for Pakistan to include religious scholars in the process to shrug off the stigma attached to the issue.

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