India's Population: Fact and Policy

India's Population: Fact and Policy

India's Population: Fact and Policy

India's Population: Fact and Policy

Excerpt

Because of our interest in driving the Japanese out of Burma and getting supplies from India to China over the "hump," we Americans have probably given more attention to news from India during the past two or three years than ever before. We could not help wondering what effect the shortage of food in eastern India in 1943 would have upon the war at that time. Now again we are hearing that a great famine impends and this time we wonder what effect it will have on the peace we so ardently desire. Life in India becomes ever more real to us even at this great distance. We are no longer disposed to shrug at suffering in India as something which does not concern us.

An excellent first step in understanding the problems of India, both economic and political, is to understand how her problem of population growth is entwined with all these other problems. This little book contains a plain and straightforward statement of India's population problem if she would care for her increasing numbers at a higher level of living. It should do much to help Americans understand how India's future and perhaps the world's is being determined by her population growth today. It should also add much to our understanding of what it means in terms of human welfare to have a crowded land with a people growing in numbers almost as fast as what Malthus called "the means of subsistence." The outlook is not hopeless but neither is it encouraging. If this book helps us to face the facts it will have served a very useful purpose even though it offers no simple or easy solution.

The writer believes that this statement of India's population problems by an Indian student of demography, who has lived with them and has also, of late years, had a chance to see them from the outside through Western eyes, will do much to help us appreciate how most of Asia lives and what difficulties her people face in striving for a better economic life. If it adds a little . . .

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