NEW DELHI, July 5, 2011 (LifeSiteNews.com) – A health official in the Jhunjhunu district of Rajastan, 155 miles west of New Delhi, has come up with a new scheme to convince people to get sterilized: offer them a chance to win a car, or a motorbike, or a blender.
The campaign was launched on July 1st, and was announced by Jhunjhunu’s chief medical officer Sitaram Sharma. Sharma said those who undergo sterilization between July 1 and September 30 will be given a ticket for a draw.
“The prizes include a Nano car, five motorcycles, five 21-inch colour TVs and seven mixer-grinders,” Sharma said, adding, “This is in addition to the cash incentives for sterilisation of Rs 1,100 (about $24) for men and Rs 600 (about $13) for women.”
Sharma noted that the campaign was initiated in an attempt to reclaim the district’s standing as having the most sterilizations in the state. In 2004, Jhunjhunu district was in first place for conducting sterilizations; however, its position slipped to 27th last year.
“This scheme is only to promote sterilisation in the district and we believe this incentive would help. Though this district has one of the least population growth rates in the state, an incentive could only help improve the situation,” Sharma told the media.
Although there are nearly 10,000 men and women sterilized in the district each year, Sharma said he is hopeful that the chance to win a Nano, which is made in India and is billed as the world’s cheapest car, might be enough to tempt at least 20,000 more men and women to subject themselves to sterilization.
According to the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), India’s total fertility rate fell from 4 children per woman in 1990 to 2.58 in 2010, which is just above the minimum 2.1 children per woman needed to maintain a population.