File photo of former chief election commissioner SY Quraishi (Photo Credits: Getty Images)

As Uttar Pradesh and Assam propose a two-child policy for population control, India Today TV Consulting Editor Rajdeep Sardesai spoke to former Chief Election Commissioner Dr SY Quraishi who said such a move will have a backlash similar to the one triggered in Assam by the NRC.

Q: You seem to suggest in your book that it’s a myth that Muslims are responsible for a higher population…

In my book, I have tried to break many myths.

First: Muslims are responsible for population explosion. Muslims have the highest birth rate, no doubt. But Hindus have the second-highest birth rate that we all forget. At no point in time was the gap more than one child. It’s now come down to 0.48 because Muslims are catching up with family planning faster than Hindus.

Second: Muslims are disturbing the population balance. Yes, there has been a 3-4 per cent increase in the Muslim population in 60 years. It is said that they will soon have the majority and they will capture power. At the current rate, it will take 600 years.

My one problem is the timing of the proposed bill in UP. The second is all the disincentives. Any coercive action won’t work. There is a backlash.

And thirdly: This bill will not be only for Muslims. It will be for all sections. It will also affect 83 per cent of Hindus. Is it somebody’s case that Hindus don’t have more than two children? Muslims should, in fact, start demanding the enforcement of the bill, and you will see a backlash similar to the one triggered in Assam by the NRC.

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