Chennai: The country was `sitting on a
volcano` as far as population explosion was concerned and
steps should be taken to effectively control this growth,
Union Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad today said.
"We are sitting on a volcano. But nobody is talking
about birth control. The country has to rise to the occasion,"
Azad, who recently advocated late marriage as part of birth
control measures, said.
Noting that the country has 17 per cent of the world`s
population, but only two per cent of land mass, he said land
for agriculture was diminishing, and they are being used to
develop infrastructure like Railways and real estate.
Azad was speaking after launching the Tamil Nadu
government`s Rs 573 crore `Kalaignar Insurance scheme` for one
crore poor people. The scheme envisages giving an insurance
cover of Rs one lakh each to families whose annual income is
less than Rs 72,000 per annum for life saving treatment in
quality government and private hospitals.
Azad announced allocation of Rs 100 crore towards
infrastructure for National Centre for Reproductive and Child
Care, coming up at the Madras Medical College (MMC) here.
This would impart training for doctors and nurses on the
"good practices" of reproductive care. A Rs 250 crore Plasma
Research Centre would also be set up in Tamil Nadu, he said.