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Population explosion or overpopulation denotes a situation in which the number of people living in a country rapidly exceeds its carrying

or sustaining capabilities. It is not just the quantity of people but the ratio of it in connection with the natural or artificial resources at hand. Population explosion can occur due to a number of reasons such as a step-up of birth rates, down slope of mortality rates with the advent of modern medical sciences, a simultaneous increase in immigration and decrease in emigration and so on. Although India occupies only 2.4% of the world's total land area, Indian demography comprises of nearly 1.12 billion people, which is roughly one-sixth of the world's population and second largest in the world next to China.

INTRODUCTION The rapid growth of the world's population over the past one hundred years results from a difference between the rate of birth and the rate of death. The human popula-tion will increase by 1 billion people in the next decade. This is like adding the whole population of China to the world's population. The growth in human population around the world affects all people through its impact on the economy and environ-ment. The current rate of population growth is now a significant burden to human well-being. Understanding the factors which affect population growth patterns can help us plan for the future. The purpose of this unit is to examine some important factors about overpopula-tion. This unit addresses: (1) the definition of overpopulation (2) the causes of rapid population growth, (3) the consequences of rapid population growth, and (4) ac-tions and strategies that can be developed to solve problems caused by overpopula-tion. This unit consists of core knowledge about the causes and consequences of overpopulation, lesson plans, teacher resources, student reading list, a list of speak-ers and a bibliography. Although this unit is intended primarily for students in grades 5-8, teachers in both elementary and high school can use this unit to explore key ideas and concepts about the population explosion.

THE DEFINITION OF OVERPOPULATION In the past, infant and childhood deaths and short life spans used to limit popula-tion growth. In today's world, thanks to improved nutrition, sanitation, and medical care, more babies survive their first few years of life. The combination of a continu-ing high birth rate and a low death rate is creating a rapid population increase in many countries in Asia, Latin America and Africa and people generally lived longer. Over-population is defined as the condition of having more people than can live on the earth in comfort, happiness and health and still leave the world a fit place for future generations.1 What some people now believe that the greatest threat to the future comes from overpopulation.

It took the entire history of humankind for the population to reach 1 billion around 1810. Just 120 years later, this doubled to 2 billion people (1930); then 4 billion in 1975 (45 years). The number of people in the world has risen from 4.4 billion people in 1980 to 5.8 billion today. And it is estimated that the population could double again to nearly 11 billion in less than 40 years. 2 This means that more people are now being added each day than at any other time in human history. Looking ahead, world population is projected to exceed 6 billion before the year 2000. And according to a report by the United Nation Population fund, total popu-lation is likely to reach 10 billion by 2025 and grow to 14 billion by the end of the next century unless birth control use increases dramatically around the world within the next two decades.3 Both death rates and birth rates have fallen, but death rates have fallen faster than birth rates. There are about 3 births for each death with 1.6 births for each death in more developed countries ( MDCs) and 3.3 births for each death in less de-veloped countries( LDCs). The world's population continues to grow by 1 billion people every dozen years.4 On one hand, some politicians call for countries, especially MDCs to increase their population size to maintain their economic growth and military security. On the other hand, critics denote that one out of five people living here today is not properly supported and believe that the world is already limited in resources. These critics maintain that slowing world population growth is one of the most ur-gent issues Those who believe that the world is overpopulated argue that if we don't sharply lower birth rates, we are raising death rates by default5

THE CAUSES OF RAPID POPULATION GROWTH Until recently, birth rates and death rates were about the same, keeping the population stable. People had many children, but a large number of them died before age five.6 During the Industrial Revolution, a period of history in Europe and North America where there were great advances in science and technology, the success in reducing death rates was attributable to several factors: (1) in-creases in food production and distribution, (2) improvement in public health (water and sanitation), and (3) medical technology (vaccines and antibiotics), along with gains in education and standards of living within many developing nations.7 Without these attributes present in many children's lives, they could not have survived common diseases like measles or the flu. People were able to fight and cure deadly germs that once killed them. In addition, because of the technology, people could produce more and different kinds of food. Gradually, over a period of time, these discoveries and inventions spread throughout the world, lowering death rates and improving the quality of life for most people.8 Food Production Distribution

The remarkable facts about the last 150 years has been the ability of farmers to increase food production geometrically in some places. Agricultural practices have improved in the United States in the last two centuries. Much of the world experi-enced agricultural success, especially in the last 50 years. Between 1950 and 1984, for example, the amount of grain harvested worldwide increased from 631 million tons to 1.65 billion tons. This represents a gain of 2.6 times at a time when the world population increased by only 1.9 times.9 In more recent years, the technology has produced a broader variety of tech-niques: new kinds of seed, chemical fertilizers, pesticides, and more sophisticated machinery. The use of technology has made possible the rapid expansion of agri-culture in the United States and other MDCs and LDCs. The use of pesticides in LDCs, for example was expected to increased between 400 to 600% in the last 25 years of the twentieth century. 10 During the past 10 years, the world's food production has increased by 24 per cent, outpacing the rate of population growth.11 However, this increase was not evenly distributed throughout the world. For example, in Africa, food pro-duction decreased, while population increased. And world cereal production fell in 1993, according to the FAO, which predicted a food shortage in 20 countries during 1994. 12 However, most experts agree that there is no shortage of food, and that equitable distribution should be sufficient to meet all needs for the future. Lack of money to buy food is the problem of malnourishment. Pov-erty, in effect translates the world adequacy into national and local shortages. Within households, men and boys have priority for whatever food is available, while women and children, especially girl children are the first to suffer malnutrition. Few resources are available to women, even though they are often re-sponsible the for food supply.13 Improvement in Public Health People have concerns about surviving daily living, such as meeting basic needs: food, water, and housing. First, access to safe drinking water was related to the incidence of epidemic diseases such as cholera and child survival. Less than 50% of the population had access to safe drinking water before 1990. By 1990, access to safe drinking water had increased by 75 per cent. But between 1990 and 2000 the numbers of people without access to safe water are projected to increase. 14 An increasing number of countries both developed and develop-ing are approaching the limits of sustainable water use based on their own re-newable resources.15 Second, the pressure to provide adequate housing increases as the population grows. More than half of the developing world's population will be living in urban areas by the end of the century. This growth outstrips the capacity to provide housing and services for others. In some countries, finding a place to live is hard, especially for women. Some women and children are forced to live in the poorest community where they are open to exploitation and abuse.16 The priorities for getting rid of poverty, improving food supply, ending malnu-trition, and providing adequate housing coincide at all points with those required for balanced population growth. Conquest of Disease

scien-tists knew how to use vaccines to protect people from infectious disease. Use of that knowledge has reduced the rate of diseases like influenza. remain high in many LDCs. better public health practices-.21 And finally.the germ theory of disease. Unfortunately. In many nations the people know about proper nutrition for young children and adults. they are likely to live to be adults. disease was less of a problem in MDCs because medical science has invented a whole range of new medicines with which to treat everything from infections to pneumonia. lack of resources has prevented many LDCs from mak-ing similar use of vaccinations to reduce the rate of infectious disease and death rates in their countries. vaccines are still not available for some dis-eases-malaria is the most obvious example and the greatest concern in LDCs. public health measures are still absent in many LDCs. Again.18 The major reason for this large differ-ence in survival rate is nutrition. smallpox. water purifi-cation.The biggest population story of the last hundred years has been the conquest of disease. When young children get enough of the right kinds of food. In many LDCs. birth rates. and nutritional education are well developed in MDCs. polio and rubella in MDCs. Nearly everywhere death rates have fallen. millions of people who would have died of disease a century ago are more likely to live to old age. vaccination. How-ever. infant death rates and therefore. public health measures like waste treatment. Moreover. As far back as 1800. 22 As stated earlier. at least in the LDCs. discovered by Louis Pasteur in the 1870s clearly demonstrated that a person's health was also a community problem. Death rates in many LDCs remain high because the money. At the same time. Scientists have learned a great deal about the ways to prevent and cure many types of disease. Thus.20 Third. therefore. personnel and facilities needed to put that knowledge into practice are not available. in many LCDs the people lack the money and skills that would allow them to use the knowledge about nutrition they already have. have remained high. As a result.23 Progress in medical science has. had a great effect on the population of most nations of the world. 19 The second most important factor is vaccinations. With this understanding. vaccinations. Sewage dumped into a public water supply could cause dis-ease throughout the community. new drugs and medicines are simply not available. disease continues to spread and cause high death rates. with the advent of new medicines. death rates in MDCs have fallen largely because of improved health and medical knowledge and because of better health and medical practices based on that knowledge. bet-ter public health practices and the development of new medicines17 In the late 80s. the science of public health was born. The most effective tools in the con-quest of disease have been improved knowledge about nutrition. As a result. . a baby born in Iceland was 32 times more likely to live to the age of one year as a baby born in Afghanistan. Today. This combination of high birth rates and low death rates have led to the population explosion in many countries throughout the world. overall death rates.

25 People tightly packed into unsanitary housing are inordinately vulnerable to natural disasters and health problems. many couples wish to limit family size. High fertility. However. most of the world's 1. shelter. However. prestige. and security for the future. but lack the informa-tion and means to make these choices. 28 Poverty. would double its numbers in . with over three quarters of the world's people. Instead of allowing poverty to persist. now jeopardizes chances for many to achieve health and security. The rapid expansion of population size observed since the end of World War II in the world's poorest nations has been a cause of their poverty. In the United States.The end of the population explosion worldwide will be determined by how much countries invest in family planning efforts to lower fertility and slow down popula-tion growth. Poor health decreases the ability of the poor to work and put them deeper into poverty. One in five Soviet citizens reportedly lives below the country's official poverty line. education and employment. When couples know some of their children may die. 33 million people . and disease. A lack of basic needs results in physical weak-ness and poor health. 27 Poverty is a condition of chronic deprivation and need at the family level. These poorer. water. High fertility rates have historically been strongly correlated with poverty. and lowered infant mortality. less developed countries (LDCs) tend to have shorter lives and higher infant death rates. they choose to have more. because poverty everywhere reduces human beings to a low level of existence.-one in eight Americans are below the official poverty line. though the population of industrial countries are growing more slowly than those of develop-ing one. The population of many countries in Asia. 24 THE CONSEQUENCES OF RAPID POPULATION GROWTH Rapid human population growth has a variety of consequences. Population grows fastest in the world's poorest countries. Different populations grow at different rates around the world. At the present growth rates. is a major concern of humankind. and high childhood mortality rates. increased life expectancy. Africa and Latin America are growing the fastest. 26 Poverty exists even in MDCs. This depends on how many children families have and the number of years someone is expected to live. 29 Rich and poor countries alike are affected by population growth. especially where large families are still important.2 billion desperately poor people live in less developed countries ( LDCs). Poor people lack access to enough land and income to meet basic needs. The Third World. which has been traditionally associated with pros-perity. Overpopulation and poverty have long been associated with increased death. Falling fertility rates are generally associated with improved standards of living. it is important to limit our number be-cause in dense populations too many lack adequate food. the population of economically developed countries would double in 120 years.

It is essential to achieve a balance between population and the available resources. Action plans and strategies can be developed to increase public understanding of how rapid population growth limits chances for meeting basic needs. Many countries lack adequate supplies of basic materials needed to support their current population. par-ents. human populations have rarely been subject to explosion. Population projections represent the playing out into the future of a set of as-sumptions about future fertility and mortality rates. In numbers. in some African countries. nearly half are in this age group. Teachers. Free and equal access to health care. it is now conven-tional practice to use the technology of population projection as a means of better understanding the implications of trends. massive efforts are needed to keep social and economic con-ditions from deteriorating further. The creation of action plans help to meet challenges to find coop-erative solutions. family planning and educa-tion are desirable in their own right and will also help reduce unwanted fertility. The powerful long-term mo-mentum that is built into the human age structure means that the effects of fertility changes become apparent only in the future. any real advances in well-being and the quality of life are negated by further population growth. and empowerment of individual women and men will be key to a successful solution to many population problems. In the Third World countries (excluding China).about 33 years. In the poorest countries. 30 The world's current and projected population growth calls for an increase in efforts to meet the needs for food. 40 percent of the people are under 15. technology and education. Rapid population growth can affect both the overall quality of life and the degree of hu-man suffering on Earth. More public education is needed to develop more awareness about population issues. Facts like the size or the growth rate of the human population should be in the head of every citizen. health care. Individual choice. The spirit of open communication. Collective vision about health care. Over-population and continuing population growth are making substantial contributions to the destruction of Earth's life support systems. human rights and collective responsibility are key to al-lowing families to plan the size and spacing of their children. 31 ACTIONS AND STRATEGIES THAT CAN BE DEVELOPED TO SOLVE THESE PROBLEMS There is controversy over whether population growth is good or bad. family planning and women's education at the community level build a basis for action. For these reasons. Schools should inform students about population issues in order for them to make projections about the future generations. water. This rapid dou-bling time reflects the fact that 37 percent of the developing world's population is under the age of 15 and entering their most productive childbearing years. community workers and other stakeholders should . In the past.

Through commu-nity forums. Teachers. The investigation of world population will raise the level of awareness. It is now a universally recognized fact that the progress of man depends upon social planning. Urbanization is a problem which has assumed gigantic dimensions in some of the technically and industrially advanced countries of the world. Urbanization. Cities in developing countries become overpopulated and over-crowded partly as a result of the increase in population over the decades and partly as a result of migration of persons from the countryside to the big industrialized cities in . the proportion of total population or area in cities or towns. Urbanization can describe a specific condition at a set time. specific issues about the population growth can be discussed and possible action plans can be developed. industrialization. They can hold community meetings at school to discuss how this issue presents a challenge to the big picture of human population on the planet "Earth". food and social organization were adjusted to their surroundings. and the sociological process of rationalization. especially women. ie. students. so that we can learn to handle problems based on data. politicians and other concerned citizens can practice how to make good decisions in everyday life. mode of living. Teachers can help students with problems and decision making on a daily basis. This data can help us to analyze our situations in a practical way. Till comparatively recently. Teachers. Urbanization is also defined by the United Nations as movement of people from rural to urban areas with population growth equating to urban migration. parents and other stakeholders can look for trends in the population explosion. and resource will affect the future generations. The most noticeable evil associated with over-urbanization is the marked deterioration in the environment of the city and the appearance of slums.[2] Urbanization is closely linked to modernization. parents. The United Nations projected that half of the world's population would live in urban areas at the end of 2008. Decisions about family size. So the term urbanization can represent the level of urban relative to overall population. urbanisation or urban drift is the physical growth of urban areas as a result of global change. Teachers. creating new problems of adaptation. It means the concentration of population in the economically developed and industrialized centres and other big cities. Modern urbanized life has produced a new environment. and by equal-izing opportunities between the genders from birth onwards. other educators. or the term can describe the increase of this proportion over time. This leads to much congestion and many social and economic problems.extend the range of choices about available resources to individuals. Modern cities have grown in a haphazard and unplanned manner due to fast industrialization. as well as students can use the information super highway to gain knowledge about other countries' population and resources. upon a perfect harmony between man and his total environment. men lived in village communities and their culture. or it can represent the rate at which the urban proportion is increasing.

The absence of these amenities raises the incidence of personal and social pathology ²delinquency. even pure drinking water. But they have themselves given birth to many problems such as fire hazard. the carbon and smoke emitted by chimneys and motor-cars. electric supply. prostitution. It can be revitalized if the government undertakes a massive . dirt and disease. thief's. It is very difficult to get pure food. This pressure of population has led to the construction of vertically rising sky-scrappers to accommodate the maximum number within the minimum space. the price of pollution could be the death of man. pickpockets. Last. but not the least. playgrounds and parking space. and chemical wastes and poisonous exhausts²this has been causing disastrous environmental pollution in big industrial cities. Pollution is the direct outcome of the application of science and technology to human problems. they breed all kinds of epidemics. hospitals and dispensaries. lack of civic amenities like parks. gamblers and drug pedlars and the like come to live in slums. a disgrace to the community. they tend to become self-centered. that of population of the environment. traffic jams. or other fellow beings. or in search of a higher standard of living and better living conditions. drug addiction etc. They become the nerve centres of all the worst vices and crimes. the defence of the country is very much handicapped if the armed forces have to consider the suffering and loss involved if metropolitan cities are subjected to aerial bombardment in the event of a war. vagabonds. They live in their own grooves and flats without having any social contacts with their neighbors. underground drainage. preparation and experiments of nuclear weapons. Urbanization has created another vital problem. As decent habitation is not possible for them to afford. milk and other commodities. chromic drunkers. in sanitary conditions. According to a biologist. urbanization has led to the breaking of joint families and the establishment of 'nucleus' families. for all kinds of persons earning their livelihood by dubious means² beggars. resulting in larger demands and lesser of employment. Another serious and insurmountable problem is that of housing the ever-growing and migrating population in big cities. Urbanization disturbs the equilibrium between demand and supply in the economic market. Due to the paucity of houses to accommodate the people. crime. Sociologically. People in the cities forfeit the ancient ideals of corporate living. they are unfit for habitation. the once beautiful cities are being reduced to slums. congestion. Everything is cither impure or adulterated or spurious. The most effective way to tackle the problem of urbanization is to make the economy of the villages and small cities fully viable. The invention. the increasing use of science and technology in industry and agriculture. the poor are driven by necessity to living on foot paths or in slums under most intolerable conditions of incredible squalor. Urbanization consequent upon industrialization has denied to a large section of the people even elementary civic amenities²pure drinking water. mental illness. in fact. Cities which are highly urbanized and densely populated are more valuable than those in which the population is diffused and decentralized. prostitutes. alcoholism. well-built and well-run schools and colleges and pucca roads. Being devoid of hygienic and sanitary considerations.

Then. The same report projected that the figure is likely to rise to 60% (4.[4] However. the Government should not allow any new industries to be set up in the already congested big industrialized cities."[5] . Surplus rural manpower should be absorbed in the villages themselves. urban growth results. substantially less than the 60% forecast by the United Nations (UN). old1 cities should be made cleaner and fit places for poor man's habitation by demolishing slums and 'Jhuggis' and by constructing neat and spacious houses for the poor at subsidized rents. to 29% (732 million) in 1950. because the messiness of rapid urbanization is unsustainable. Government offices and headquarters should be diffused and decentralized and shifted at smaller centres. has calculated that "the proportion of the world population living in cities and towns in the year 2030 would be roughly 50%. Thirdly. It is within the power of man to create a healthy environment for the human race. writing in THE FUTURIST magazine. Expansion of buildings should be horizontal and well-spread over. as of 2006. [edit] Movement Percentage of population which is urbanized. What is needed is a readjustment of social and moral values. Industries. but Bocquier sees many of them likely to leave upon discovering that there¶s no work for them and no place to live. The global proportion of urban population rose dramatically from 13% (220 million) in 1900. This kind of growth is especially commonplace in developing countries. by country. to 49% (3.9 billion) by 2030.2 billion) in 2005.[3] As more and more people leave villages and farms to live in cities. Both Bocquier and the UN see more people flocking to cities. The rapid growth of cities like Chicago in the late 19th century and Mumbai a century later can be attributed largely to rural-urban migration. French economist Philippe Bocquier. The rapid urbanization of the world¶s population over the twentieth century is described in the 2005 Revision of the UN World Urbanization Prospects report. All civic amenities should be religiously provided and ensured.rural development programme. In this way the village economy shall become self-sufficient and autonomous.

Telluride. Colorado. AL area. Douglas County. Colorado. since much less of the population is living in a rural area. the Birmingham-Jefferson County. the majority of people worldwide will be living in towns or cities. New Mexico.Percentage of World Population: Urban vs. Swaziland or Niger.[9] These two towns show some of the quickest growth rates in Europe.[7][8] Urbanization rates vary between countries. it is estimated 93% of urban growth will occur in developing nations. Rural. Buckinghamshire. In regard to future trends. Taos.[6] According to the UN State of the World Population 2007 report. two major examples of new urbanization can be seen in Swindon. The United States and United Kingdom have a far higher urbanization level than China. but a far slower annual urbanization rate. for the first time in history. Wyoming. the Pacific Northwest and the barrier islands of North Carolina. sometime in the middle of 2007. y y Urbanization in the United States never reached the Rocky Mountains in locations such as Jackson Hole. with 80% of urban growth occurring in Asia and Africa. this is referred to as the arrival of the "Urban Millennium" or the 'tipping point'. as has the coast of Florida. India. Wiltshire and Milton Keynes. . In the United Kingdom. Colorado and Aspen. The state of Vermont has also been affected.

[edit] Causes Population age comparison between rural Pocahontas County. Iowa. Illinois is an example of the early American grid system of development. The grid is enforced even on uneven topography.[10] The City of Chicago.Center of São Paulo. Iowa and urban Johnson County. one of the largest metropolises in the world. . illustrating the flight of young adults (red) to urban centers in Iowa.

There are more job opportunities and a greater variety of jobs. In Manila. flood or pestilence. which generate jobs and capital. theme parks. Cities are where fortunes are made and where social mobility is possible. Cities. Farm living is dependent on unpredictable environmental conditions. In modern times. etc) and a better quality of education. it is also through the cities that foreign money flows into a country. People. In rural areas. industrialization of agriculture has negatively affected the economy of small and middle-sized farms and strongly reduced the size of the rural labour market. . Whether the source is trade or tourism. and in times of drought. services and wealth are centralized. the cost of living has forced residents to live in low quality slums and shanty towns Urbanization occurs naturally from individual and corporate efforts to reduce time and expense in commuting and transportation while improving opportunities for jobs. Living in cities permits individuals and families to take advantage of the opportunities of proximity. it is difficult to improve one's standard of living beyond basic sustenance. movie theaters. It is easy to see why someone living on a farm might wish to take their chance moving to the city and trying to make enough money to send back home to their struggling family. education. housing. are usually located in urban areas. especially the elderly are often forced to move to cities where there are doctors and hospitals that can cater for their health needs. urban areas can also have much more diverse social communities allowing others to find people like them when they might not be able to in rural areas. and marketplace competition. A major contributing factor is known as "rural flight".Example of rapid and expansive urban development in Manila. are known to be places where money. Health is another major factor. Urbanization is not always attributed to high density. Due to their high populations. as opposed to the slums hidden in shockingly close proximity. People move into cities to seek economic opportunities. often on small family farms. Other factors include a greater variety of entertainment (restaurants. namely universities. and transportation. There are better basic services as well as other specialist services that aren't found in rural areas. in contrast. Businesses. survival becomes extremely problematic. diversity.

effects can include a dramatic increase in costs. As cities develop. This is currently occurring fastest in India. Eric Hobsbawm's book The age of the revolution: 1789±1848 (published 1962 and 2005) chapter 11. As agriculture. think tanks such ." This is likely due the prevailing south-west wind which carries coal smoke and other airborne pollutants downwind. financial service provision. and small-scale industry give way to modern industry the urban and related commerce with the city drawing on the resources of an ever-widening area for its own sustenance and goods to be traded or processed into manufactures. including such functionaries as employees of the local municipalities. It is at this time that many new commercial enterprises are made possible. most of which has been demolished over the last 30 years to make way for 9-story apartment buildings in the growing city of Kstovo. often pricing the local working class out of the market.[when?] urbanization of rural areas has increased. rising inequality resulting from rapid urbanisation trends. The drive for rapid urban growth and often efficiency can lead to less equitable urban development. stated "Urban development in our period [1789±1848] was a gigantic process of class segregation. This relation among places of different sizes is called the urban hierarchy. more traditional local services. such as the one in the background In recent years. It is also a result of industrialization that farms become more mechanized. and accumulate more capital. Research in urban ecology finds that larger cities provide more specialized goods and services to the local market and surrounding areas. function as a transportation and wholesale hub for smaller places.[citation needed] [edit] Economic effects One of the last houses of the old Russian village of Lukeryino. For example. The almost universal European division into a 'good' west end and a 'poor' east end of large cities developed in this period. thus creating new jobs in cities. and an educated labor force. Similar problems now affect the developing world. putting many labourers out of work.These conditions are heightened during times of change from a pre-industrial society to an industrial one. which pushed the new labouring poor into great morasses of misery outside the centres of government and business and the newly specialised residential areas of the bourgeoisie. as well as often concentrating administrative functions for the area in which they lie. making the western edges of towns preferable to the eastern ones.

and keeps falling.[17] Impacts also include reducing soil moisture and intensification of carbon dioxide emissions. In rural areas. In cities.[12][13][14][15] [edit] Environmental effects The urban heat island has become a growing concern and is increasing over the years. Different forms of urbanization can be classified depending on the style of architecture and planning methods as well as historic growth of areas. Secondly. less evaporative cooling in cities allows surface temperatures to rise higher than in rural areas. where less vegetation and exposed soil exists. the Overseas Development Institute have even proposed policies that encourage labour intensive growth as a means of absorbing the influx of low skilled and unskilled labour. This can prevent overpopulation in the future. The urban heat island is formed when industrial and urban areas are developed and heat becomes more abundant. the majority of the sun¶s energy is absorbed by urban structures and asphalt. during warm daylight hours. Firstly. leaving more for nature. India resulted in tremendous strain on the city's infrastructure. the birth rate of new urban dwellers falls immediately to replacement rate. Finally. The planned Dwarka Sub City can be seen in foreground while the unplanned and congested residential areas of West Delhi are visible in the background.[11] Urbanization is often viewed as a negative trend. education. like slash and burn agriculture. it minimizes land use by humans. Stewart Brand argues that the effects of urbanization are on the overall positive for the environment.[16] This effect causes the city to become 2 to 10o F (1 to 6o C) warmer than surrounding landscapes. housing. and marketplace competition. but can in fact. diversity. . it puts a stop to destructive subsistence farming techniques. Additional city heat is given off by vehicles and factories. a large part of the incoming solar energy is used to evaporate water from vegetation and soil. as well as by industrial and domestic heating and cooling units. be perceived simply as a natural occurrence from individual and corporate efforts to reduce expense in commuting and transportation while improving opportunities for jobs. and transportation. Living in cities permits individuals and families to take advantage of the opportunities of proximity.[18] In his book Whole Earth Discipline.[13] [edit] Changing forms Massive urbanization in Delhi.

UN agencies prefer to see urban infrastructure installed before urbanization occurs. with cities losing population to rural areas. aesthetic. although with exploration came the collision of nations. Examples can be seen in many ancient cities.. such as inner-city redevelopment schemes. Landscape planners are responsible for landscape infrastructure (public parks. edge city (Garreau. When the residential area shifts outward.. Recent developments. is based on an advance plan. originally called counter urbanisation has occurred. but often settle in shanty towns and experience extreme poverty. Planned urbanization. Rural migrants are attracted by the possibilities that cities can offer. Los Angeles is the best-known example of this type of urbanization.In cities of the developed world urbanization traditionally exhibited a concentration of human activities and settlements around the downtown area. It is between rural classes and urban classes.. which meant that many invaded cities took on the desired planned characteristics of their occupiers. ie: planned community or the garden city movement. The rural sector contains most of the poverty and most of the low-cost sources of potential advance. Many ancient organic cities experienced redevelopment for military and economic purposes. network city (Batten. mean that new arrivals in cities no longer necessarily settle in the centre.the most important class conflict in the poor countries of the world today is not between labour and capital. which simply describes that people who used to be at the periphery of the former empires now live right in the centre. supported by labour protection. 1991). the reverse effect. 1995). In some developed regions. new roads carved through the cities. and new parcels of land were cordoned off serving various planned purposes giving cities distinctive geometric designs. poly-centric form of concentration is considered by some an emerging pattern of urbanization. The fact that many immigrants settle in impoverished city centres led to the notion of the "peripheralization of the core". poorly paid jobs. and has been caused by factors such as the fear of crime and poor urban environments.". It is called variously exurbia. A number of researchers and writers suggest that suburbanization has gone so far to form new points of concentration outside the downtown both in developed and developing countries such as India. organization and power. the so-called in-migration. So the urban classes have been able to win most of the rounds of the struggle with the countryside. greenways etc) which can be planned before .[20] Most of the urban poor in developing countries able to find work can spend their lives in insecure.[19] This networked. economic or urban design reasons. This has been possible because of improved communications. this is called suburbanization. In the 1980s. sustainable urban drainage systems. and is particularly common for richer families. this was attempted to be tackled with the urban bias theory which was promoted by Michael Lipton who wrote: ". or postmodern city (Dear. but the urban sector contains most of the articulateness. the effect is not restricted to cities with a high ethnic minority population. According to research by the Overseas Development Institute pro-poor urbanisation will require labour intensive growth. Later termed "white flight".' [21] Urbanization can be planned urbanization or organic.. flexible land use regulation and investments in basic services. In-migration refers to migration from former colonies and similar places. 2000). Nor is it between foreign and national interests. which can be prepared for military.

You will learn about some of the possible ways in which psychological interventions can help in dealing with the problems. Studies have shown that the children from the background of poverty and social disadvantage lag behind their counterparts from the enriched background. Studies of perception. As you have learned earlier in the lesson 10 and 11 that for healthy human development a child needs environmental support for survival and development. Even if they go they become drop outs and fail to complete education. or afterward to revitalize an area and create greater livability within a region. science and technology and spread of education.1 Introduction India is one of the developing nations of the modern world. memory an intelligence have demonstrated it several times. Subjectively poverty stands for perceived deprivation. They live under difficult conditions which are not conducive for development of their human potential. The unavailability of stimulating environment and absence of effective role models decreases the motivation level.[22] 19 Social Problems 19. A number of low caste. scheduled tribe and backward communities have been put to discrimination for many centuries. production of food grains. It has also been found that the poverty condition is demotivating and makes a person more vulnerable. socio-political conditions and cultural processes. Their cognitive development and performance is found to be at a lower level. shelter. Poor people lack the necessary resources and capacity to satisfy basic needs like food. However.3 Poverty A large section of the Indian society is suffering from poverty.urbanization takes place. a republic. more than a half century ago. The studies have also shown that the performance between the advantaged and disadvantaged children increases with advancing age. The life expectancy has increased and many diseases have been controlled. Poverty is a phenomenon Social Problem :: 201 which is objective as well a subjective. Objectively poverty implies a dehumanizing condition in which people are unable to look after the basic needs. Some of these problems have their roots in our colonial past while others are related to demographic changes. there are many areas in which Indian society is experiencing a variety of problems. This lesson tries to acquaint you with some of the problems and the psychological factors involved in them. In this sense they are doubly deprived. For instance lack of or inadequate nutrition arrests mental development during early childhood. A large section of poor children do not go to school. They are socially disadvantaged and are deprived from the experiences necessary for development on account of their membership of specific groups. In this context it may be pointed out that poverty is also related to the social structure. health and education. During this period the country has been engaged in efforts to attain development and growth in various areas such as building infrastructure. Low level of achievement motivation and greater need for dependence in these people make them less effective in coping with the problems of every . Concepts of control of the urban expansion are considered in the American Institute of Planners. 19. As such it is relative and any body can feel poor by comparing himself as herself with a rich person. Poverty interferes with development in many ways. It has become an independent country.

The question why some people are poor has been answered in many ways. 19. Infact caste based . socio-economic disparities in the society and raised aspirations have culminated in a complex situation. Since long there has been cultural give and take between the people from 202 :: Psychology India and other countries. All these condition have created a situation in which various kinds of social tensions have become very frequent events are as follws : 1. personal impressions and hearsay. values and coping styles which. and social disadvantages. A detailed analysis of the problem of poverty shows that poverty is caused by multiple life. tribals and minority groups were discriminated against and looked down upon. The transformation of nation as a self sufficient and cohesive political entity has proved to be a difficult challenge. This has led to a number of clashes and conflicts which have been violent and have generated hatred.4 Social Tensions The Indian society consists of people from different religious. The life in the poverty condition reinforces certain behaviour pattern. or the culture of the people. 2. The search for causes of poverty has lead to many answers. The colonial past. Many times these are not founded in our real life experiences. linguistic and ethnic backgrounds. Many of the communities were considered as untouchables. The social and economic structure in India promotes inequality. Madhya Pradesh) is also creating political instability and problems of governance. You must have read about political movements in North East part of India (Assam. It has been located in the individual. Since 1947 when India gained political independence the country has been engaged in the gigantic task of nation building. As a result suspicion and mistrust has developed between Muslims and Hindus. The Indian constitution prohibits against such discrimination and has abolished untouchability. it is still practiced in certain ways. they are based on false information. Bihar. The Kashmir region is experiencing the negative impact of crossborder terrorism and people are suffering. As a result the poor become marginalized and can not contribute to the mainstream of the society. Efforts have been made to put nation on the path of socio-economic development. Various parts of the country are experiencing separatist movements. However. in the social structure. For instance many people blame the victim and consider the poor as responsible for the characteristics or dispositions of the people. Traditionally the Indian society was hierarchically arranged and the different communities and caste groups showed a pattern of social distance in which low caste. Tripura) where demands for separate political identities have been raised from time to time. Nagaland. reduce the chances of upward social mobility. However. hostility and harm doing towards the target groups. If we look at the historical trends we notice that the partition of India led to considerable degree of violence and the harmonious relations between Hindus and Muslims were disturbed. 3. Caste-related prejudice and discrimination has also been on rise in certain parts of the country. they are very powerful and shape our behaviour in important ways. Instead. The Nuxalite movement in certain parts (Andhra Pradesh. In recent years inter group conflicts related to caste have moved from the social to the political arena of life. Thus if we have prejudice against some one it may lead to aggression. In the course of socialization people acquire negative attitudes and stereotypes.

To this end the following steps may prove very helpful. 4. 3. The approach should be to evolve a strategy in which diverse groups and communities are able to live distinct patterns of life the way they want.5 Gender Discrimination . The creation of identity involves strategies which enhance similarity within the group and difference between the groups. 1. 4. In this context the rise of low caste groups who often call them selves Dalits is becoming a prominent feature of modern India. This kind of differentiation is present in almost all societies. Poverty interferes with ______________. Subjectively poverty stands for ______________ deprivation. This also implies that the differences across groups cannot be totally eliminated. family and community level is clearly visible. The presence of this group has changed the complexion of Indian political scene. 5. Today caste-affiliations are not so important in social or religious matters as they are in political matters. spread of education and media are playing key role. They are related to the pattern of social change. committees and organizations are created to serve these purposes. We need to appreciate this diversity in our social life in a positive manner. Super ordinate goals may be created that may be shared by all the groups. Objectively poverty implies a ____________ condition. 6. The various groups or communities should compliment each other and help in achieving their goals. Social Problem :: 203 On the whole the Indian society is currently experiencing social tensions of various kinds. respect and complementarity need to be created. increase in the degree of economic inequality. Assertion of separate identity and promoting the same with different tactics is becoming a central problem. Building an atmosphere of _____________ and ___________ can enhance group behaviour. In particular the rise of middle class migration of people from villages to cities. 2. Some psychological intervention for enhancing group behaviour Since groups are inevitable and constitute an important part of our social reality what we need is to recognize the essence and value of pluralism. Greater opportunities for mutual care. 3. They utilize caste-related identity for political gains.alliances. The tensions in the lives of people at individual. Thus associations. The cause of poverty is located in the ____________ of the people. INTEXT QUESTIONS 19. People use identities in an emotionally charged way to create a group structure for promoting certain goals.1 Fill in the blanks in the appropriate words 1. 2. Building an atmosphere of mutual trust and harmony. Increasing dialogue amongst the diverse groups existing in the society. 204 :: Psychology 19. The Indian constitution has abolished ___________. Most of the conflicts and tensions revolve around the issue of identity. Equity and equality of opportunity for different groups needs to be ensured. groups and organization are growing fast. All groups are important and play distinct role. In this way a diversion of ³in group´ or ³own group and ³out group´ or other group is created.

The women are also subjected to discrimination in learning. emphasis on domestic activities and lessor emphasis on education and career have made women¶s lives full of problems. The salient ones include corruption. dowry deaths and exploitations of various kinds which are very common.g. These problems are many in number. In fact the women are becoming targets of atrocities of many types. This is often reflected in the formation of a nexus between politicians and criminals. The pattern of discrimination against women varies across rural. the Indian society has still to go a long way as for as gender equality is concerned. The Indian dependence on others (e. They are discriminated against from early childhood. illiteracy and urbanization. husbands) becomes fate of the majority of the women folk. Unfortunately this equality and prominence tells an incomplete fact. Such exploitations function as obstacles in the process of development and growth of the girl child. which is made of half male and half female in its constitution. The sex ratio of male and female in the India population has been changing and becoming unfavourable towards women. parents. However. Corruption refers to those transactions which involve undue benefits to some people who don¶t deserve or are not entitled for them. careful analysis of Indian society indicates that the situation is not good for women folk.6 Some Other Social Problems : Corruption. legal provisions about the age of marriage and reservation for women in various walks of life has contributed to change in their situation. We have gods and goddesses both and one of the incarnation of lord Shiva is Ardhanareeshwar. The provsion for education. Use of money to bribe and drawing benefits that are not feasible under the law of the land. 19. They are neither able to realize their potentials nor able to contribute to the mainstream of society. Illiteracy and Urbanization. This image is still prevailing in various sections of the society. Misuse . some Indian women have been able to overcome the barriers in their path and became successful in many walks of life. The same is manifested in discrimination against them from very early period. However. early marriage. They are assigned diverse responsibilities and treated as relatively weaker and less competent.Women and men are equally important for the growth and development of individual and social lives. As a developing country India is facing a number of problems which need careful analysis Social Problem :: 205 and demands steps for their solution. food and social activities. Today the presence of women in various occupations and public offices is much more prominent than what it used to be during earlier periods. The incident of infanticide. Their contributions are often limited to family and that too are ignored. physical and social resources that make these people capable of exhorting power over others and controlling the rewards and punishments for others. Let us briefly discuss these problems. However. It is reflected in the discriminatory practices in the family such as distribution of work. In this connection one can mention the names of Pandita Rama Bai. The girl child is usually burdened with responsibilities that are beyond her capacity. Such transactions make some people recipients of financial benefits. Sarojini Naidu. urban and tribal areas. In the Indian society women are considered major contributors to family and society. When a girl child matures and becomes an adult she is often found to be physically weak and mentally constrained. The women play the important role as mother and the same makes it unique. Indira Gandhi who emerged as leaders at national level.

feelings and pattern of behaviour are significant. This situation is generating pressures on cities which were meant for a definite size of population. The social organization. carried out in West Bengal and . Such people have to depend on others for various things and are exploited in various ways. crime and health related problems. ³With a literacy rate of 65. It¶s a sad state of affairs that a country which had higher level of literacy (than British) at a time when British came two centuries ago is now facing the challenge of a huge number of people who are illiterate and cannot read or write. age seven and above. Illiteracy is another major problem before the society. set up with the proceeds of his Nobel award. You can see that 206 :: Psychology the solutions for these problems require inputs from different disciplines. Social commentary In his essay on Social Infrastructure As Important As Physical Infrastructure published in India Development Report 2002. Kolkata Chennai and Delhi have crossed the limits for which they are capable of. on the basis of investigations by Pratichi Trust. The lack of reading and writing skills makes a person incapable of availing the various opportunities to help themselves. This situation creates a number of problems such as unauthorized and illegal activities. Consumerism emphasizes on exploitation of resources for personal consumption without any concern for society and environment. Similarly the individualistic attitude favours the view that the individual is the ultimate reality and all processes need to be explained at individual level. Urbanization is another problem that deserves serious attention. Also. The individual is free and responsible to his or her self only. therefore. is expected to contribute to the literacy mission and making it a success. we have 296 million illiterates. Amartya Sen notes. The social problems described above deal with different domains of life. problem of waste disposal creation of foles. The use of black money and scams of various types that have been discovered in recent years clearly tell that corruption is adversely influencing the growth and development of Indian society. This attitude is responsible for the ecological imbalance that is widely experienced in today¶s world. as per the 2001 census. The number of illiterates today exceeds the population of the country of around 270 million at Independence. civilian organizations and structures are facing difficulties in meeting the demands of the people. Each and every educated person. There is increasingly greater migration from villages to cities. Kirit S. For example the poor rural people are asked to put their thumb impression of various legal documents and are subjected to exploitations and legal hassles. The limited civic facilities. emergence of slums.´ In his book The Argumentative Indian. urbanization is linked with certain kinds of attitude like consumerism and individualism. Keeping these negative consequences in view the government is trying to universalize primary education. age seven years and above. Modification of attitudes. Parikh had pointed out.and misappropriation of resources for personal benefits is creating a gulf between ³haves´ and ³have not´. The role of psychology is prominent as it deals with behaviour. The mega cities like Mumbai. The lack of these skills renders them deprived of the opportunities for upward social mobility. economy and environmental planning in many cities are becoming unmanageable. Psychologists can contribute by providing strategies for achieving these goals.

The sex ratio of female in india is decreasing. Social Problem :: 207 In the Indian society women are considered major contributors to family and society. which is made of half male and half female in its constitution.7 What you have learnt A large section of the Indian society is suffering from poverty. linguistic and ethnic backgrounds. The girl child is discriminated in family and social activities. tribals and minority groups were discriminated against and looked down upon.Jharkhand. It has been located in the individual. Traditionally the Indian society was hierarchically arranged and the different communities and caste groups showed a pattern of social distance in which low caste. that absenteeism of comparatively well-paid teachers. are often turning into an influence that reinforces the neglect of the interests of children from desperately underprivileged families. particularly where bulk of the students come from scheduled castes and tribes. Poverty is a phenomenon which is objective as well a subjective. Students are circumstantially forced to go in for private tuitions. 4. 3. The life in the poverty condition reinforces certain behaviour pattern. reduce the chances of upward social mobility. 19.2 State whether the following statements are True or False: 1. The transformation of nation as a self sufficient and cohesive political entity has proved to be a difficult challenge. Objectively poverty implies a dehumanizing condition in which people are unable to look after the basic needs. India has achieved gender equality. The Indian society consists of people from different religious. 2. Causes of poverty has lead to many answers. Men are more important for growth and development of the society. Women and men are equally important for the growth and development of individual and social lives. There is evidence of hardening of class barriers that separate the newly affluent teachers from the impoverished rural poor. Corruption refers to benefits to some people who are not entitled for them. ³Sometimes the very institutions that were created to overcome disparities and barriers have tended to act as reactionary influences in reinforcing inequality« The teachers¶ unions. poses a major problem. in the social structure. Subjectively poverty stands for perceived deprivation.´ INTEXT QUESTIONS 19. values and coping styles which. 5. . We have gods and goddesses both and one of the incarnation of lord Shiva is Ardhanareeshwar. Illiteracy is a major problem before the society. which have a very positive role to play in protecting the interests of teachers and have played that part well in the past. He concludes. or the culture of the people. 6. The Indian constitution prohibits against such discrimination and has abolished untouchability.

either directly or indirectly. Each issue is connected to another. The social problems described above deal with different domains of life.some Indian women have been able to overcome the barriers in their path and became successful in many walks of life. . a much better percentage of literacy. These problems are many in number. A person aged seven and above. urbanization. Literacy is a reasonably good indicator of development in a society. World Bank studies have established the direct and functional relationship between literacy and productivity on the one hand and literacy and the overall quality of human life on the other. This fact can be clarified as all the developed countries like America and Canada have very low illiteracy rates. the strongest link of that chain is illiteracy.92 %. As per 2001 Census. while Bihar has the lowest with 47. Illiteracy is the mother of all issues as it gives birth to many other issues like poverty. communication and commerce. child labour. is treated as literate. who can both read and write with any understanding in any language. industrialization. Myanmar. Thailand and the like have achieved. Every issue that our society faces is like a link of a chain. whereas countries like India. female foeticide. Kerala has the highest literacy rate which is 90. the overall literacy rate of India is 65.38%. unemployment.53 %. Turkey and Iran have a very high rate of illiteracy. India is facing a number of problems which need careful analysis and demands steps for their solution. in lesser time. The difference between the highest and the lowest literacy rate in India is very high. Even countries like Sri Lanka. population burst and many more. The chain of issues in this society that we live in. Vietnam. Spread and diffusion of literacy is generally associated with essential trait of today¶s civilization such as modernization. the solutions for these problems require inputs from different disciplines. It is very hard to digest that the land of the Vedas is one of the countries with the highest illiteracy levels and shows the inability of our government to utilize programs like Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan and National Literacy Mission.

it is due to this problem of illiteracy only. if we are to become a developed nation. to be more responsible and to make his/her own decisions. The male literacy rate is 75. social evils like child marriage. there is a wide disparity in literacy. children¶s participation in primary schools. to bridge the gap between the rich and the poor. as an endeavour to improve the quality of life. population growth. women¶s emancipation. bride burning and so on. They fail to perceive literacy as part of the development process. The National Literacy Mission came into being in 1988 and started striving to involve all sections of the community in the literacy endeavour. as the process of building awareness among the weaker sections. Our motto should be ³each one teach one´. pitting poverty alleviation. Literacy is the ultimate solution to fight problems like communalism. It is ironical that even today. food. Our government is of the people.96% and female literacy rate is 54. India is developing but at a very slow rate. family planning. immunisation. Literacy enables a person to think rationally. A literate person is aware of all his fundamental rights and duties. The country had failed to implement the provisions of Article 45. ³Teach India´ will connect . They are unable to appreciate the relevance of literacy in matters like infant mortality. One of the initiatives is ³Teach India´. The Supreme Court in its 1993 ruling held that children had a fundamental right to free education. while the urban population is more of the µemployee class¶ and also more educated. our leaders and people¶s representatives give literacy a very low priority. Not only the government. above it. declared that the whole nation must pledge itself to the work of eradicating illiteracy. The National Policy of Education -1986. clothing. and the ³right to education´ was incorporated in the Constitution as a fundamental right. so if we are to become a developed nation. Several efforts have been made on part of the government to deal with illiteracy. dowry. The social system in India promotes education for the male gender while the female population. Ex ± President A. Even amongst the male and female population. whose aim is to provide a platform to educated Indians to provide assistance in basic education to the unprivileged children. as the arrangement to give their due. Neglecting the issue of illiteracy can hurt the development of India very badly. terrorism and under development. work. especially in the deep interiors of the country. health etc.Illiteracy in India is characterized by wide gaps between the urban and rural populations. this is not the fault of a corrupt government.J Abdul Kalam gave his assent to the Constitution (83rd Amendment) Bill. to be understanding. for the people and by the people. The 1992 Education Policy envisaged free and compulsory elementary education of satisfactory quality to all children up to the age of 14 before India entered the 21st Century. but every literate citizen should contribute in battling with the demon of illiteracy.P. but what is the use if people can not even make the right choice? Illiteracy can bring down even the most powerful nations down. The rural population depends mainly on agriculture and the rate of illiteracy is high. the government should first remove the problem of illiteracy by introducing effective programs with proper implementation and budget. is kept away from schools. 2000. providing for compulsory and free education of children up to 14 years of age within 10 years from the commencement of the Constitution.28%. particularly in the 15-35 age group. shelter. as part of democratisation of political power.

also known as depressants like 'compose' induce a feeling of calmness. They are supposed to fare better than their classmates in examinations and other co-curricular activities. Drugs. are chemical compounds which when consumed alter the way the body functions. The time for the change is now.educated individuals with the specialist education providers. In the words of the new President of the United States. eases depressions and removes inhibitions. media and pop culture. Drugs are prescribed by physicians to cure diseases and sometimes to enhance physical and mental capacities. Its now turn of the youth to step up and take the responsibility on their shoulders to take this nation towards the light of literacy. Some get addicted because they are poked fun at if they do not use drugs. It has attained the proportions of almost an epidemic among the youth. relaxation and drowsiness. although the period of ecstasy is apparently short-lived. has to face the brunt of being born in this fast changing society. Seeking refuge in drugs relieves tensions. for seeking temporary escape from the rigors of life. broadly speaking. They are used as intoxicants to relieve pain. This physical and mental dependence on drugs is called 'drug addiction'. psychotropic drugs accompany the risk of the patients' becoming dependent on them. It is mostly introduced to an unsuspecting person by his friends and is usually observed that once addicted to drugs. etc. right from childhood. hatred for any authority. While persons of all ages and at all places are open to drug use the most susceptible among them are the youth. . The stress to outdo the other in this mad rat race of consumerism often leads to depression. We are the ones we¶ve been waiting for. Drug abuse is a psychiatric. The body then becomes totally dependent on drugs and cannot survive without the daily dose. But. either end their lives or experiment with drugs. So man. These passions are more often materialistic. And in the pursuit of materialistic passions. unable to cope with the expectations of their loved ones. I am ready for it. They are classified into four groups. In addition to these other factors that lead to drug addiction are .lack of parental care and supervision. Some youngsters take to drugs because they want others to believe that they are superior and mature. With regular intake the amount required to produce the effect also increases. lack of moral and religious education. they initiate others to drugs. Barack Obama ³Change will not come if we wait for some other person or some other time.´. A section of the youth. Failure in his pursuit often leads him to discontentment and dejection and he finds himself a misfit in this world. man becomes alienated from the society. Tranquillizers. broken homes. We are the change that we seek. And some take drugs just to seek company or break boredom. psychological and social problem. In the modern world. Even children are not spared from this. as such things are taken by older people. are you? Drug Addiction: A Psychological and Social Problem Bertrand Russell in 'The Conquest of Happiness' has said that the sole reason of unhappiness finding refuge in the heart of man is the unhindered growth of "self-centered passions". The illusive and momentary escape and mental relaxation provided by the initial intake. encourages people to indulge in them more often. none is unaffected by stress. Opiate such as opium and heroin are physically addictive.

The myth that the use of drug provides great peace and tranquility has led many people to fall prey to this habit. The law enforcing departments often find it difficult to prosecute the criminals because of their dubious involvements with the politicians. We just can't blame the students. diarrhea. but the kick or ecstasy it provides to the brain makes the user seek more. cannabis are different hallucinogens. An amount of Rs. They start off during their teenage by smoking a cigarette. A major portion of the drugs available in India is smuggled from Afghanistan and Pakistan. which are highly harmful. Drug abusers. being careless. run the risk of contracting many diseases after using contaminated needles. The Government of India has enforced stringent laws to curb the menace of drug trafficking. Article 47 of the Constitution enjoins that the State shall endeavor to bring about prohibition of consumption. increase self-confidence and flow of ideas. some of the diseases being blood poisoning. Hallucinogens can alter a person's thoughts. if they are unable to procure their daily dose.Stimulants like cocaine produce feelings of excitement. Failure in getting their daily dose of drugs because of shortage of money can also make them resort to crime and murder. The Ministry of Welfare has been implementing the Scheme for Prevention of Alcoholism and Drug Abuse since the year 1985-86. intoxicating drinks and drugs which are injurious to health. They see .. Reduced cognitive operations lead to poor academic performance and a decline in self-esteem. People addicted to opium tend to loose weight. Heroin addicts suffer from muscle cramps. feelings and perception. on its part. The Ministry is assisting 373 voluntary organizations for maintaining 459 centers all over the country. sterility and a total disinterest in work. 225 million was spent under the scheme in the year 2001-02. The first experience with drugs is not very pleasant. Drugs can reduce cognitive operations making it difficult for the youth to develop a functional set of values and ideals. marijuana. but a large part of it finds its way into the illegal trade. Society.P. The amount of money involved in the trafficking has made the narcotics mafia stronger than the government. should also feel responsible towards the menace and help the government in eradicating it. Drug trafficking is also patronized by the politicians and the bureaucrats for their own benefits. LSD. And some of them graduate into bigger things like opium and smack. serum hepatitis and also AIDS. Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh for medicinal purposes. A drug addict in due course gets alienated from the mainstream of the family. The northern region is the hub of growers. except for medicinal purposes. The government should ban the cultivation of all the drug-yielding crops and provide the growers with alternate professions to sustain themselves. The Narcotics Control Bureau has on several occasions intercepted huge hauls of drugs. Indeed drugs have many dimensional effects on human body and mind. Our country has been confronted with the problem of an increased trafficking in drugs. The profile of a majority of drug addicts is the same. Cultivation of poppy ad opium is legal in U. The Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act of 1985 have made drug offences non-bail able. suppliers and couriers. shivering and perspiration. neighborhood and society. vomiting. LSD can cause severe damage to the central nervous system. They find rank hypocrisy everywhere.

Responsability. Noone can avoid this reality. What are we talking about afer all? Drugs? Drug addiction?.. it is fundamental to relate it with work.. a bond among (all) people and at the same time people's organizations. But we ask that you think on what we write. AIDS and other health problems. The family being the basic unit of the society should make a concerted effort towards the development of children. social justice. greed. citizenship. We must all assume that our cooperation is crucial. And work-related organizations are very important in the society we live in. This connection between society and individual. And each one's contribution starts by our own conduct and continues with a senseful involvement in the community life. But the subject continues to be polemic. friends and relatives of the patient should effectively contribute towards his rehabilitation. All problems that derive from the way society is organized (and its us that shape its organization). The NGOs like the Narcotics Anonymous give counseling and treatments to several drug abusers and restore their shattered lives. There are many controversial ideas under passionate discussion. some questions and proposed answers follow. each one's problem . The idea of responsability aims at the future. that is. To be responsible is to respect a fulfilling way of life. Thinking of "guilt" and "guilty ones" is living in the past. at managing the problem. To understand and to manage problems such as drug addiction requires the involvement of dedicated organizations but depends on the way people participate in them and relate to each other within them (and vice-versa). etc. We all have a fair idea of what are those about. These organizations also have their responsabilities. If we accept that drug addiction is a social problem. deceit and subtle violence. Let us move step by step. There should be regular counseling sessions in schools and colleges to guide students to cope with the stress on campus and in their life after their academic pursuits are complete. famine. is the common mark for all big problems of our time: drug addiction. The family.the wide gulf of difference between the great values taught in the classrooms and the outside world of elders that promote the sub-culture of corruption. consumism. security in the cities.. racism. To understand each other. segregation. We do not expect full agreement on what we write here. Drug addiction and work Drug addiction is one of the most serious social problems of our time. It is here that we all have a role to play. They can't reconcile these two extremes.. to cultivate an ethic attitude towards our own way of life and others ways.a responsability for all and each of us. Society is made of the individuals and the organizations that are built from the individuals. war.. then we are also accepting that it is everybody's problem.. environment sustainability. What is the meaning that we are all responsible? That we are all "guilty"?. What are drugs? . Looking at drug addiction from this point of view.

memory. The moment comes when the drug is the only reason for living and being for this person. This develops in some people involved with drug addicts. Family. It is a process whereby the drug progressively takes over the consumer's way of life. At this point. Addiction is an inadequate utilization. with children. All can be deeply affected by drug consumption. and a negation of addiction. Then an addicted person might be held responsible for his/her addiction. But the more important is what they have in comon. everything ceases to count. and friends. Generally it comes with an illusion of power and of control of situations. This reaction is natural in people who become concerned . work. All drugs have positive and negative aspects and can be utilised better or worse by different consumers. The CNS is very important. by the way different cultures and law systems face them. while focusing on addiction as an illness. one that can be provoked by all psychoactive drugs and is far more threatening: psychological addiction. What is addiction? There are different psychoactive drugs. orientation. perception. the addiction they can provoke on those who take them. When we discuss addiction we should not forget co-addiction. the motivations. It is very important to discuss this idea. with husband/wife. awareness. The essential concept on this influence is addiction. When the organism misses the drug. not every drug will do that. by their effects. family members can go to the point of becoming addicts in trying to deal with the addict's problems. etc. Only a part of the drugs are related to addiction: those are the psychoactive drugs. What we are. They start to live for these problems and give up their own lives.. Friends. school. and we will later. The consumer is not aware of what is happening inside and rejects all warnings from friends and family. Addiction is always a consequence of the way a person relates with the substance. It has a big influence on the way we perceive the world around us and on the way we deal with it. the values. They can be distinguished by their geographic origin. Consciousness. lovers. by the way they are produced. the way we see ourselves and how we stand by others as well. The relationship with parents. time of reaction and quality of decisions.. With the family. with school.. recovery is extremely difficult since withdrawing the drug from the person is equal to taking away the reason to live. by the threats associated to their consumption. unbearable for any human being. It is the total void. all can be affected these substances. But finally. friends. colleagues. As is known. work. with girl/boyfriends. as the organism's inadequate adaptation to the regularly consumed drug. which can modify the functions of the Central Nervous System (CNS)."Drug" designates in general all substances that are capable of modifying one or more functions of the living organism. what is addiction? There is physical addiction. There is another form of addiction. it reacts in a way that triggers a great amount of suffering in the consumer. The feelings. thinking and reasoning.

note that the diseases of the end of this century tend to be chronic and of prolonged development (AIDS. are strong. We must admit that there is no "us" and "them". But when they depend they are ill because they do not control this situation and their lives. Many even go to the point of denying that it might be a health problem. in particular when they love them deeply. It goes the same way with most of the diseases plaguing the world at the end of this century. Tough question. while they.). They need help.. the disorganised. and this means they need treatment. increasingly marked by the dimension mental health/ mental illness. etc. because they are so many. What are those problems?. The main reason for these doubts is the paradox between the impression they get that the mental ill are weak persons and the impression that they are responsible for their problems (they are that way because they want to). that is difficult to find a thread within. We must admit that we are not like unbeatable fortresses and that these problems will not happen with us. are a conjugation of particular strengths and weaknesses. Drugs. So much so for undertaking the essential steps towards their recovery. their lives and the lives in their . even when we are ill -. This notwithstanding.. Drug addiction is a problem of Being. Quite the contrary. vascular and heart diseases. one must seek in the combination of all. the normal people with some balance in our lives. are weak. This ambiguity towards drug addiction is reminiscent of the ambiguity with which society always faced mental problems in general. while living in the same world and with the same pressures and difficulties as the remainder? The obvious answer seems simple: we. cancer. Mas human reality always outdo simple and obvious answers. are intertwined in each other. But it ends in worsening the evolution of the addict's problem and. We are partially responsible for our health. Being. Our problems are indeed the cause for the importance drugs gained in our lives. people with problems. a resource we need to cultivate everyday the life through. but human beings who. but not to forget that the explanation does not rely on one or a few of these problems. We are increasingly responsible for the quality of our living. but the explanations must be sought in the circunstances surrounding it. in essence. Drug addicts are prime responders for their treadings between life without drugs and life dependent on drugs. And drug addiction gives us a good opportunity to reflect on this reality. Why then is only a minority mentally affected. the co-addicts also develop their own problems and need help to recover.with others. Actually. we try to list some of them. besides. Why is the addiction? The opinion prevails that drugs are the main cause for our problems. Are the drug addicts ill? Drug addiction is not an ordinary illness from many people's points of view. which are more and more the result of what we are and what we do.

Inflated individualism and materialism. It is from the respect towards others that a respect for ourselves and the sense for an existence with dignity and responsability is formed. torn by present day individualism. The (human) Being builds and cultivates itself in its relation with other Beings. Television.. People who become dependent are another perspective necessary for understanding the problem. But to grow in the Family is essential to the Being. Politics and Economy. however. To balance Family with Work is one of the challenges our time poses to each of us so that we continue to be (recall that we talked about each one's responsibility). Different life histories and ways to be: for example. That is the way things are at present. The people. social institutions such as Family. in School. obliterate. running so fast that does not give enough time to feel and to think. It is an artificial illusion.. a weak notion of self. unassuming of responsabilities.families. in the Streets and at Work. The cities and society. The (human) Being. Drugs are the epitome of life in the cities. we are our work. Dependency and denial. Life exterior to us. Society. mentioned before. Lost family. Without a route and a Being. We are what we do. to define the strategy and to promote a mobilization of that same responsability from all and each of us. The effects drugs have on each person are a way of looking at an explanation. It is in the Family that the roots of Being are formed. for becoming ourselves. is between Family and Work. It is the task of politicians to produce the vision. Unfortunately they have the use . Work and the Family. an inadequate expectancy for living. Work or Street. isolated. It is the city mass that is killing the respect humans had for the Being. is a number among numbers. The drugs. which makes them a political problem. are also strong reasons for explaining this illness. to the nonBeing. while we forget our children. School. who are nothing yet. The City. Work pushes the Family into the background. to find the Being. The School that cannot replace the Family. Another struggle of our time. not coping with the prime mission of educating. Just like drugs. is not Being. made of persons without identity nor Being. Mass schooling offering little and discouraging further searches. Politics and economy. a lust for living and winning fast. Huge Mass. Family. it becomes very dangerous to live in the "Streets". is possible only from these roots. building the Person. Everything is reduced to numbers. suffering from Being that for some can become unbearable. Family. of life without Being. The illusion. but some people become used to "be" like that but require drugs for that. Drugs are a social and global problem. For teh youth there remains little room for finding a meaning for their lives. Television and other forms of illusion. School and Streets. Disoriented family. No time for Being. To grow further. a disproportionate fear of the future. School. Drugs produce an illusion of well-being and of power. Many lose themselves in drug addiction even before it is time for them to get a first job.

drugs are the cause for half of the prison population in Portugal to be condemned.000 and 150. and the right to freedom from governmental imposition of religion upon the people within a state that is neutral on matters of belief. Illegal drugs are a different matter. What are the prime drugs? Alcohol continues to be the drug of highest consumption and the one that produces the highest rate of problems for the society as a whole.[2] Secularism draws its intellectual roots from Greek and Roman philosophers such as Marcus Aurelius and Epicurus. Moreover. should be unbiased by religious influence. we all know that drugs make one of the World's biggest trades. some argue that state secularism has served to a greater extent to protect religion from governmental interference. James Madison. social protection and healthcare expenditures are examples of the consequences from alcohol consumption. Hashish (Cannabis. The health. Serious health problems. differing political movements support secularism for varying reasons.[5] . In one sense. Enlightenment thinkers like Denis Diderot. secularism may assert the right to be free from religious rule and teachings. on a social or philosophical level. but we can assert that they contributed to its beginnings and growth.000 Portuguese people addicted to illegal drugs. agnostics and atheists such as Bertrand Russell and Robert Ingersoll.of spending time with things that may be more urgent -.[1] (See also public reason. we can say that their contribution to dealing with solutions is indispensable. while secularism on a social level is less prevalent. Voltaire. The purposes and arguments in support of secularism vary widely. Current estimates indicate between 50. and modern freethinkers.) In another sense. We cannot say that politics and aconomy ahve created the problem just by themselves. and Thomas Paine. road and work accidents. This type of secularism. Secularism is the belief that government or other entities should exist separately from religion and/or religious beliefs.[3][4] Within countries as well. Some countries are economically dependent. (See also Separation of church and state and Laïcité. As to Economy. The main consequences of this problem are the destruction of lives and families. the trading tentacles reach everywhere. however the one that brings most trouble is heroin. etc. it refers to the view that human activities and decisions. Urban criminality comes next in the row. John Locke. it has been argued that secularism is a movement toward modernization. It is estimated that 10% (1 million) of the population in Portugal has problems related to the consumption of alcohol.) is the one with highest consumption in Portugal. especially political ones. Anyway. and away from traditional religious values (also known as "secularisation"). social and criminal costs from drug consumption are beyond rating.) Some scholars are now arguing that the very idea of secularism will change. violence in the Family. Thomas Jefferson. has often occurred while maintaining an official state church or other state support of religion. In European laicism. In the United States. medieval Muslim polymaths such as Ibn Rushd. Directly or indirectly.but are less important. There is cocain and similar drugs as well.

2. 6. Positive Ideals behind the secular society 1. and the lack of authority of religious leaders over political decisions. This contrasts with other Western countries where religious references are generally considered out-of-place in mainstream politics. rather than through the actions of a dedicated secular movement. Becker. . but is pluralistic. Peter L. Nevertheless. religious beliefs are widely considered a relevant part of the political discourse in many of these countries. 3. which implies there must be agreed on methods of problem-solving. this process is known as secularization. 5. While the secular society does not set any overall aim.Secular society In studies of religion. Karl Löwith. D. Nor is there a common ideal type of behavior with universal application. Is a society without any official images. While every society must have some common aims. modern Western societies are generally recognized as secular. Breaking down of the barriers of class and caste. L. Carl L.[22] Modern sociology has. This is due to the near-complete freedom of religion (beliefs on religion generally are not subject to legal or social sanctions). 4. Hans Blumenberg. Abrams. M. often been preoccupied with the problem of authority in secularized societies and with secularization as a sociological or historical process. 2. Munby characterizes a secular society as one which: 1. and a common framework of law. Is not homogenous. Is tolerant. through examination of the facts. among others. Each person should be helped to realize their particular excellence. Some societies become increasingly secular as the result of social processes. since Durkheim. Equality of all people. it helps its members realize their aims. Max Weber. Twentiethcentury scholars whose work has contributed to the understanding of these matters include D. Refuses to commit itself as a whole to any one view of the nature of the universe and the role of man in it. Deep respect for individuals and the small groups of which they are a part. 4. Problem solving is approached rationally. Among the first to delineate the nature of a secular society. 3. Munby.H. and Paul Bénichou. L. It widens the sphere of private decision-making. Berger. in a secular society these are as limited as possible.

sexual harassment and abuse by authority figures (such as teachers. or emotional abuse by an intimate partner. and honour killings. Scope of the problem y y y y In a 10-country study on women's health and domestic violence conducted by WHO. A wide range of physical. police officers or employers). . yet they are widely practiced in many countries in Asia. o Between 15% and 71% of women reported physical or sexual violence by a husband or partner. and low social status in communities are linked to violence against women. coercion or arbitrary deprivation of liberty. when women are murdered in the name of family honour. The United Nations defines violence against women as any act of gender-based violence that results in. and maternal health problems can result from violence against women. Systematic sexual abuse in conflict situations is another form of violence against women. o Between 4% and 12% of women reported being physically abused during pregnancy. including threats of such acts. Forced marriages and child marriages violate the human rights of women and girls. and such traditional practices as forced or child marriages. physical. There are many forms of violence against women. whether occurring in public or in private life. sexual or mental harm or suffering to women. More about the study Every year. Trafficking of women and girls for forced labour and sex is widespread and often affects the most vulnerable. the Middle East and sub-Saharan Africa.000 women are murdered by family members in the name of honour each year worldwide. dowry-related violence. Many women do not seek help or report violence when it occurs. 28% in Tanzania.Violence against women Fact sheet N°239 November 2009 Key facts: y y y y y Violence against women is a major public health problem and a violation of human rights. about 5. or is likely to result in. physical or sexual abuse by family members or others. including sexual. Lack of access to education and opportunity. sexual and reproductive. 30% in rural Bangladesh. trafficking for forced labour or sex. mental. (24% in rural Peru. physical. and 40% in South Africa). o Many women said that their first sexual experience was not consensual. Violence by an intimate partner is one of the most common forms of violence against women.

for partner violence. risk of violence increases with marital conflicts. Family and relationship: Within families. and limited ability to care for themselves and their children. and poor overall health. male dominance. Sexual and reproductive health: Violence against women is associated with sexually transmitted infections such as HIV/AIDS. Community: Within communities. and a lack of community cohesion or resources. Who is at risk? Though risk factors vary. negative attitudes about women. limited mobility. female infanticide (murder of infant girls). a young age. Social and economic costs The social and economic costs of violence against women are enormous and have ripple effects throughout society. back pain. Health effects Health consequences can result directly from violent acts or from the long-term effects of violence. abdominal pain. post-traumatic stress disorder. the risk is higher where there is gender inequality. Each of these behaviours increases risks of health problems. multiple partners and unprotected sex). and additional victimization. Violence by an intimate partner is the leading cause of non-fatal injuries to women in the USA. substance use. gastrointestinal disorders. y y y y y y Injuries: Physical and sexual abuse by a partner is closely associated with injuries. fibromyalgia.y Worldwide. eating disorders and emotional distress. loss of wages. a history of abuse and substance use. economic stress and poor family functioning. Death: Deaths from violence against women include honour killings (by families for cultural reasons). lower socio-economic status. and maternal death from unsafe abortion. induced abortions. Risky behaviours: Sexual abuse as a child is associated with higher rates of sexual risk-taking (such as first sex at an early age. including headaches. gynaecological problems. including miscarriage. sleep difficulties. Women may suffer isolation. low educational level. the choice of partner. and adverse pregnancy outcomes. and. Partner traits that put women at risk include alcohol or drug use. Mental health: Violence and abuse increase risk of depression. limited education. Physical health: Abuse can result in many health problems. . low birth weight and fetal death. and witnessing domestic violence against women or being abused as a child. The potential risk factors can be grouped into the following subsets. Children subjected to sexual abuse are much more likely to encounter other forms of abuse later in life. some characteristics seem to increase the likelihood of violence. unintended pregnancies. y y y Individual: Personal attributes associated with higher risk of violence include: limited education. lack of participation in regular activities. inability to work. suicide. up to one in five women and one in 10 men report experiencing sexual abuse as children.

Other efforts with positive outcomes include: work with teenagers to reduce dating violence. Prevention and response Further evaluation is needed to assess the effectiveness of violence prevention measures. and wider knowledge of available resources for abused women (including legal assistance. improving their self-esteem and negotiating skills. can lessen the consequences of violence. better awareness of violence and its consequences among health workers. . and where there are restrictive laws on divorce and ownership and inheritance of property. housing and child care). WHO response WHO and partners collaborate to decrease violence against women through initiatives that help to identify. and reducing gender inequities in communities. mass public education campaigns. Interventions with promising results include increasing education and opportunities for women and girls.y Societal: On a broader level. programmes that support children who have witnessed intimate partner violence. Disseminating information to countries and supporting national efforts to advance women's rights and prevent violence. Collaborating with international agencies and organizations to deter violence against women globally. quantify and respond to the problem. Developing guidance for Member States and health professionals to prevent violence and strengthen health sector responses to it. This is a key step in understanding the magnitude and nature of the problem at a global level. higher risk is found in societies with traditional gender norms or a lack of autonomy for women. and work with men and boys to change attitudes towards gender inequities and the acceptability of violence. Advocacy for victims. including: y y y y Building evidence on the scope and types of violence in different settings. or when there is social breakdown due to conflicts or disasters.