What are the growth rate and birth rates in India?

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Ashley Kannan eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Let's take the growth rate first.  I will make the assumption that you are speaking of the economic growth rate.  In some recent assessments, the Indian economy saw a large amount of expansion in 2005 and 2006.  For example, in 2006, the growth rate was 9.6% with uninterrupted expansion that was "assisted by markets restructuring, huge infusions of FDI, increasing foreign exchange reserves, boom in both IT and real estate sectors, and a thriving capital market." There has been a slight drop in economic growth over the last two years, which is more of a reflection of the worldwide global economic crisis and not as much an indication of Indian economic contraction.  This decline in growth could be reflective of Indian economy if it continues to place a great deal of emphasis on foreign wealth, which might be dry if the current economic conditions have their way.  The standard read on the Indian birth rate is that it is skyrocketing.  The nation is over a billion people and for this, it gets a great deal of critique.  Yet, the crude birth rate is actually decreasing, so say the Times of India:

Crude birth rate, that is, the number of live births per 1,000 population dipped from 26.4 to 22.8 for the whole country between 1998 and 2008. That's a 14% decline. But in eight major states, the decline was much more. In Punjab, birth rate fell by a whopping 23%, followed by Kerala and Maharashtra (both 20%) and West Bengal (18%).

The reason for this is conflicting, but many believe that the economic emergence of India has led to better education systems and socio- economic reality has helped this trend.