India’s census 2011 provisional data, puts the country’s headcount at 1.21 billion.
Overall, there has been a decline in the number of children under the age of 6, down 5 million since 2001 to 158.8 million in 2011. During this time, India’s population has increased by more than 181 million. The proportion of children between 0 and 6 to total population is indicative of a fall or rise in fertility.
UK Telegraph – Officials said they were alarmed at the tilting of India’s gender balance further towards boys amid growing concerns over the impact of female foeticide by families who prefer sons.
According to the census 914 girls are being born per 1,000 boys compared with 927 per 1000 in 2001. India now has 623.7 million males and 586.5 million females. Census Commissioner C. Chandramauli said the figures were a “matter of grave concern”.
The alarm over India’s declining sex ratio overshadowed the striking growth in its population to within 120 million of overtaking China as the world’s most populous country. India’s population is forecast to overtake that of China in 2026, but the census revealed early signs that the growth is starting to slow.
While it has more people than the United States, Indonesia, Brazil, Japan, Bangladesh, and Pakistan combined, its growth rate had fallen to 17.6 per cent from 21.5 per cent ten years ago. It is the first time population growth has fallen since 1921.
Other data indicated rising literacy levels – up to 74 per cent from 65 per cent ten years ago.
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