Thiruvananthapuram, Jul 31: Imagine that you are punished for having more than two children? What your reaction would be? Shocked, angry? Yeah, this the reality for you in Kerala soon. The Law Reforms Commission of Kerala headed by social reformer Justice V R Krishna Iyer has recommended a penalty of Rs 10,000 and withdrawal of Free Education and health care for anyone who goes for a third child.
Sharp opposition came from the Church soon after such a move was mooted. As it was already concerned by the fall in the birth rate among its followers. What perturbed the Church was the swelling number of Muslims vis a vis falling population of Christians and Hindus in the state.
The Kerala Family Planning and Control Bill seeks to promote family planning and birth control as methods of controlling population. But what has stirred a storm is the suggestion for a penalty on any person who goes for a third child. A family or person having more than two children should also be denied facilities and advantages like free education, health assistance, facilities for housing and other priorities including employment allowed under schemes or projects of the state, says the Bill.
Clause 7 of the Bill reads, "No person or institution shall use religion, region, sect, caste, cult or other inducements for production of more children than permitted." Once the law comes into force, "Any person or a public organization or institution associated with or carrying on the work of family planning and birth control" may approach a court against those found violating the provisions.
Is it an adoption of the Chinese population policy or something else? Anyways, its for sure that this move is going to invite more opposition and controversies in the state.