Why the Muslim community will resist the UP population control bill the most

There is a lot of talk about the Population Control Bill proposed by the Uttar Pradesh Law Commission. The bill, titled The Uttar Pradesh Population (Control, Stabilization and Welfare) Bill, 2021 contains many provisions to encourage people to have only two or more children for one.

In a separate article, we discussed the issues with the various project layouts. Here, we will discuss the challenges to implementing the law and the extent to which it is likely to meet its stated goals.

Why most resistance will likely come from the Muslim population

It can be said with certainty that the project, if implemented in law, will face serious challenges from a significant part of the population. And upon its announcement, it’s pretty clear where the challenge will come from.

Zainab Sikander Siddiqui, Islamist apologist columnist for The Print, said the Uniform Civil Code and the Population Control Bill are the basis on which the BJP will seek to win 2022. Although she does not explicitly state so There are clear indications that she believes the project is aimed at the Muslim community, since she is of the fervent disposition that every party movement is directed against Muslims, although this is clearly not the case.

Mohsin Raza, the Ministry of Health for the Muslim Waqf and Hajj for the Welfare of Minorities at UP, also said, “If we have two children, it is easier for us to make them doctors or doctors. engineers, but if we have 8, it is possible that they will grow. until it becomes only maneuvers or punctures at the bike shop.

Studies have well documented that Muslim women tend to have more children than their Hindu counterparts, all other factors taken into account. According to the available data, the total fertility rate (TFR) of the Muslim community in Uttar Pradesh, i.e. the number of children per woman, was 3.10 in 2015-16 and for Hindus the number was 2.67. Thus, it is an observable fact that Muslims tend to have larger families.

Thus, he is most likely to face resistance from members of the Muslim community.

The challenges of implementation

The biggest implementation challenge is that people who believe it is their religious mandate to procreate will not be hampered by government disincentives towards them. Thus, those who want to have more than two children will continue to have the same ones.

This mentality is more widespread within the Muslim community, because the religious sanction of procreation is sanctified by Islamic principles and clerics. Therefore, the proposed project, if implemented, will tip the demographic balance more towards them and lead to demographic instability.

In addition, the TFR among Muslims in Uttar Pradesh is also declining. In such circumstances, political action could spur many of them to become more religious and have more children fueled not only by religious mandates but also by political causes.

It should not be considered beyond the realm of possibilities that having more children can become a symbol of political protest. In such circumstances, the bill, if turned into law, will act counterintuitively against its objectives.

The same factors are unlikely to operate among the Hindu masses. Thus, it is very likely that the impact will be mainly borne by the Hindu community with birth rates dropping faster than they are currently with the same remains quite stagnant for the Muslim community after opposing factors come together. be canceled.

If this is indeed the case, then the proposed project could lead directly to demographic instability.

Will the state government allow those who have more children to suffer?

The proposed project also provides that those with more than two children will not receive benefits from public social assistance schemes. Thus, this means that the state government will have to deny social assistance schemes to those who need them most. The optics will be disastrous.

Each study indicates that the poorest people have more children than the richer sections of society. So if the state government denies them social assistance then they will have to bear the brunt of the media propaganda against them and it is really extremely difficult to defend against the images of the suffering poor because the government has them. would refuse social assistance because of the number of babies they have.

Allegations will also follow that they are deliberately targeting Muslims and although the state government can deny them as much as it wishes, but the images of people in misery will remain. And if the images are of a Hindu community or specific castes that have popular leaders in other parties, the outlook will be even more dire. As such, it is inconceivable that all social assistance schemes for people with more than two children will be stopped.

A box of worms will be opened by the bill if implemented into law, a box of worms that democratically elected governments would generally like to avoid.

Lack of permanence can thwart your chances of success

A significant portion of the population who believe they have to procreate for divine grace might assess all options and consider having babies anyway, because in a democracy no law is truly permanent.

So, members of the Muslim community who wish to have more than two babies can choose to have them anyway because no law is permanent. Governments will one day change and it is very likely that when another party comes to power, they will repeal the law if the bill is implemented and, therefore, the incentives and disincentives associated with it.

Given the transient nature of democratic governments, Islamic fundamentalists will no doubt prefer to endure than to submit. And because of the demographic advantage they will have in the future, it is likely that before long they will be able to overturn the proposed law.

Thus, there will be no real long-term benefits but many negative consequences due to the demographic imbalance it will generate.

The case of the blasphemy law

The Indian Penal Code’s “blasphemy law”, section 295A, prohibits speech that could incite communal passion. Therefore, there is a punishment associated with the same. But does anyone believe that he will be able to criticize Islam in the same way that he will slander Hinduism if the law is repealed?

Obviously not, because criticism of Islam carries the not-so-subtle threat of violence from jihadists and fundamentalists. So even if section 295A were repealed, it would only embolden Hindusphobes and have no impact on anything else.

Murder and incitement to murder and violence are the most deterrent, with strict penalties envisaged in the Indian Penal Code. However, when someone criticizes Islam, threats of violence and even murder are committed.

Take the example of Kamlesh Tiwari for example, the disincentives to commit murder did not prevent the jihadists from murdering him. Likewise, if people believe that procreation is a religious mandate, they will produce children regardless of the sanctions against it.

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