29 September, 2020

In Assam, Muslims Are Warming Up To Family Planning Methods

Muslims constitute nearly 35 per cent of Assam’s 33 million people and the high birth rate among the community is a major source of friction over the state’s most volatile issue—undocumented immigrants, especially those from neighbouring Bangladesh.

Life Lessons
Teaching science, contraceptions at an Assam madarsa
In Assam, Muslims Are Warming Up To Family Planning Methods
outlookindia.com
2018-09-11T15:07:46+05:30

Ilias Ali knows it takes a long time to change the attitude of people deeply rooted in religious dogma and age-old beliefs. But he didn’t give up. Not even when his family received death threats from radical Muslims in Assam who were against his efforts to popularise family planning among the community. That was in 2009. During a public programme at a health centre in Hojai, students of a madarsa staged a protest march and tried to interrupt the event. Last month, Ali—a former professor of Gauhati Medical College and Hospital—addressed an estimated 1,800 students and teachers at another madarsa in the same town in central Assam. The response this time was overwhelming; the enthusiasm of the students and teachers signaled a paradigm shift in the mindset of the community.

Muslims constitute nearly 35 per cent of Assam’s 33 million people and the high birth rate among the community is a major source of friction over the state’s most volatile issue—undocumented immigrants, especially those from neighbouring Bangladesh. The high growth rate...

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