Editor in Chief: Moh. Reza Huwaida Monday, March 25th, 2019

High Birthrate: Potential Threats to The Social Order


High Birthrate: Potential  Threats to The Social Order

Beside other challenges, the High Birthrate has also been identified as one of  the most worrying issues in the world, especially in Afghanistan. According to the most recent UN data, Afghanistan’s population is estimated 36.37 million in 2018 which indicates almost 60% increase comparing to the last census nearly 40 years ago in 1979 that was estimated15.5 million populations by an incomplete census. Accordingly, the population of Afghanistan will reach estimated 60 million after 20 years though the economic resources already come short to fulfill the current needs. As the 80% of country’s land is highly mountainous and unusable for food productions and the rest 20% severely damaged due to chronic droughts. The current estimated figures equate a population density of 49 people per square kilometer or 127 per square mile. This makes Afghanistan the 150th most densely populated country in the world.
Currently, the world populations rate is around seven billion despite the fact that annually eighty million populations are newly added to the current number by each year. This shows that the entire world is facing the same crises, while the Asian countries are the most crowed and also the poorest. Experts already warned, if the world countries do not take any effective measures, the current resources on the earth will not satisfy the needs of people in next forty or fifty years. In fact, this is a great potential threat to world peace and tranquilities, especially to Afghanistan which already suffering starvation and economic dependencies. However, the government and international organizations carried out someprograms but it requires more comprehensive solutions to deal all factors rooted in the context of Afghan society.
Though multiple factors recognized behind issue, the main factors consist of illiteracy, cultural poverty and security demand.In regard to social security demand, there is a kind of competition amongst Afghan family, especially in the rural areas, to have several sons and form stronger family; because small families are considered weak and easily aggressed by rural powerbrokers or rivals. Those who have few sons, think that they are more vulnerable and weaker than the families having several sons. Therefore, they endeavor to have the same number of sons and term it a big magnificence in the society. As a result, women are impelled to become the victims of such unsound competitions and inevitably deliver several babies without observing the required birth space and future consequences. In addition, family planning has not legally defined in Afghanistan ruling law except the civil law approval of 1976 discussed about family rights which need to be updated.
While cultural poverty and illiteracy factors are not only the high birthrate factors but also the barriers in course of fighting against population control programs. As the resistance against new values and new world phenomenon are the feature any uneducated and traditional countries who have not crossed this phase and often breaking the old structures are not easy. Beside this, thePopulation dispersion to the remote areas and around large mountains are the other challenges in the way of implementation of population control programs. There are many distant towns and villages which are completely deprived of health and hygiene services, due to its long distance, mountainous isolation or security problems.Especially, the mothers and children are more vulnerable because of mentioned reasons.
Based on a survey about children and mothers’ situation in the world (investigated over 179 countries) Afghanistan ranked 152. According to this study, Afghanistan is a country where the life condition is not favorable for women and children. As per the survey report of the World Health Organization, still Afghanistan kept the highest record of child and maternal mortality rate in the region due to lack of accessibility to required healthcare services and other factors. According to the figures released by the ministry of public health, as many as 1,600 mothers died in every 100,000 often due to giving birth to a baby as result of repeated pregnancy related problems.
Frequent pregnancies without sufficient space between births not only endanger life of mother and baby, but also deprive these women of enjoying motherhood in its true sense. Women burdened by large families and battling various illnesses in their productive years fail to realize and harness their potential and are unable to raise their children in a healthy environment. Whereas, Afghanistan has the highest maternal and child mortality rates in the world also faces the challenge of population explosion. Family analysts repeatedly warn that lack of family planning methods will result that Afghanistan would have uncontrolled population in the next 50 years.
To gain success against population growth problem, there is a serious need for a comprehensive preventive population strategy considering all legal, social, traditional and economic dimensions of the matter.People should be aware that no religion advises that a woman shall bear a child even if mother mentally and physically get unhealthy; One of  the most important principles in our culture is not to impose any loss to any human being regardless of their race, gender, color, religion and so on. So, when medical doctors advise that women should observe three to five year spaces between each birth and warn that multiple pregnancy affect health of the mother and newborn baby then it is on contrary to any religion teaching if we disrespect the advice of health experts. So, family planning must be suggested as a first pillar of safe motherhood and all people should be educated to undergo a healthy family planning.

Mohammad Zahir Akbari is the permanent writer of the Daily Outlook Afghanistan. He can be reached at mohammadzahirakbari@gmail.com

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