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Voicing Concern : Mayawati Wary Of BJP’s Draft Population Control Bill, Questions Intent, Ally Nitish Too Disagrees

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Reacting to the Yogi Adityanath government’s draft population control bill, BSP president Mayawati has said the bill has raised questions about the Uttar Pradesh government’s intentions as people believe it lacks seriousness and has more to do with the ruling BJP’s electoral interests. She said if the BJP government had been serious about the population control, then it would have started working towards it when the government was formed.

The BSP chief’s reaction comes in the wake of the Uttar Pradesh State Law Commission (UPSLC) posting the draft of the population control bill on its website. “The new bill being brought by the BJP government for population control, more than its merits and demerits, raises doubts over both the policy and intention of the government regarding the seriousness of this national concern. People believe it lacks seriousness and has more to do with electoral interests,” Mayawati said in a tweet in Hindi.

“Failing to turn the growing population into the country’s strength and honour by making them more aware and educated, the BJP is now trying to control the population by force and punishing most of the families like the previous Congress government, which is grossly unfair in the eyes of the public,” she added. According to the draft bill, people having more than two children in the state will be debarred from contesting local bodies polls, applying for government jobs or receiving any kind of subsidy.

It is not only rivals of BJP who are wary, Bihar Minister Nitish Kumar earlier had made his disagreement clear over the laws being considered by a few Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-ruled states to control population. Assam and Uttar Pradesh have proposed draft bill on population control triggering sharp reactions from the Opposition. Nitish Kumar’s Janta Dal-United (JD-U) is an ally of the BJP in Bihar and at the Centre.

When asked about his views on the draft bill, Nitish Kumar told reporters in Patna,”It’s not possible to ensure population control with a law.”

“I believe it is not possible (to control population with a law)…take China or any other country’s example,” the chief minister added. Nitish Kumar emphasized that educating women was more important. “Everyone will benefit if women are educated. Bihar’s fertility rate is reducing now,” he said.

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