NGOs have zeroed in on seven expectant mothers in a village near Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh, as the most likely to give birth to the world's 7 billionth person, reports the Hindustan Times. The organizations have made arrangements for a grand reception, the paper said.
Plan -- a UK-based children's welfare NGO -- began the countdown for the birth of a girl in a village near Lucknow, the paper said. The city is the capital of India's most populous state, which also has the highest birth rate of any state in the country.
The NGO's India chapter -- Plan India -- has organised a major event at the Community Health Centre (CHC) in Mal village, about 23km from Lucknow, on Monday, the paper said.
Top state officials are expected and state population registrars, social workers, the media and local celebrities will attend a special ceremony at the community health centre, where the new-born will be instantly issued birth certificates as a part of their 'Right to Identity'.
Meanwhile, in a compelling long-read for the BBC online, Mike Gallagher assesses the world's efforts to curb population growth, which have resulted in various injustices against the world's poor across various countries over the past several decades.
In 1968, the American biologist Paul Ehrlich caused a stir with his bestselling book, The Population Bomb, which suggested that it was already too late to save some countries from the dire effects of overpopulation, which would result in ecological disaster and the deaths of hundreds of millions of people in the 1970s.
Instead, governments should concentrate on drastically reducing population growth. He said financial assistance should be given only to those nations with a realistic chance of bringing birth rates down. Compulsory measures were not to be ruled out.
Western experts and local elites in the developing world soon imposed targets for reductions in family size, and used military analogies to drive home the urgency, says Matthew Connelly, a historian of population control at Columbia University in New York.
"They spoke of a war on population growth, fought with contraceptive weapons," he says. "The war would entail sacrifices, and collateral damage."