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UNFPA Report Reveals India’s Population Surpasses 1.44 Billion: Insights into Demographic Trends and Reproductive Health Inequities

India’s Population Surpasses 1.44 Billion, 24% in 0-14 Age Bracket: UNFPA Report

New Delhi, 17-04-2024 : According to the latest report by the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), India’s population has surged to an estimated 1.44 billion, with approximately 24% falling within the 0-14 age category. The report, titled “Interwoven Lives, Threads of Hope: Ending Inequalities in Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights,” sheds light on India’s demographic landscape and underscores significant challenges and disparities in sexual and reproductive health.

India leads globally with a population estimate of 1.4417 billion, surpassing China’s 1.425 billion. This projection suggests that India’s population could potentially double in 77 years, indicating the urgent need for comprehensive demographic management strategies.

The report also delves into the demographic distribution across various age groups. It reveals that 24% of India’s population consists of children aged 0-14, while 17% fall within the 10-19 age bracket. Additionally, the segment aged 10-24 constitutes 26%, with the 15-64 age group representing the majority at 68%. Moreover, approximately 7% of India’s population is aged 65 years and above, with men exhibiting a life expectancy of 71 years and women 74 years.

Despite some progress in sexual and reproductive health over the past three decades, the report highlights persistent inequalities, particularly among marginalized communities. Child marriage remains a prevalent issue, with the percentage fluctuating around 23% between 2006-2023. However, there has been a significant reduction in maternal deaths, with India’s contribution to global fatalities dropping to 8%.

The report acknowledges India’s achievements in improving access to maternal health services and addressing gender disparities in health outcomes. Nevertheless, it emphasizes the existence of stark inequities in maternal mortality rates across different regions and socioeconomic groups. While some districts have successfully met sustainable development goals in reducing maternal mortality, others continue to grapple with alarmingly high rates, notably in rural areas with indigenous populations.

Moreover, women with disabilities face heightened risks of gender-based violence and encounter barriers in accessing healthcare services. The report underscores the widening disparities in healthcare access, primarily benefiting wealthier women and certain ethnic groups.

Furthermore, the report highlights the intersectionality of various challenges faced by vulnerable populations, exacerbated by factors such as climate change, humanitarian crises, and mass migration. It emphasizes the urgent need for targeted interventions to address these disparities and ensure equitable access to sexual and reproductive health services.