At a congregation of the community held at Sanjan in Gujarat's Valsad district on Sunday, it was decided that every Parsi couple giving birth to a second child would get Rs 3,000 per month till the child attains the age of 18 years, while a couple giving birth to a third child will get Rs 5,000 per month, Punchayet chairman Dinshaw Mehta said to PTI.
The Parsis or Persians, migrated to India about a 1,000 years ago. They were persecuted in their home country of Persia for they follow a religion called Zoroastrianism. In India, they settled mainly along the west coast of India. Presently, the highest number of Parsis lives in Mumbai - 45,000. Surat has a population of 3,700 Parsis, Navsari 4,500, Ahmedabad 1,100 and Vadodara 1,000. There are around 500 Parsis in Bharuch-Ankleshwar and 1,750 in Valsad district.
Speaking over the phone, Mehta said, "The congregation was attended by about 3,000 Parsis from various parts of the country and abroad. We discussed the issue of survival of Zoroastrian community in changing times."
"Every year there is a decrease of 10 to 15% in Parsi population. The number will fall to 36,000 by 2050 if no serious efforts are made to check the trend," he said.
The congregation is held every year on 'Sanjan Day' which marks arrival of the Parsis in India at Sanjan 1,297 years ago.
(With agency inputs)