Demographic Dividend : A window of opportunity for India – UPSC GS3

Demographic dividend:
Demographic dividend implies a greater proportion of working age population population (15-60 years age) as compared to the sum of shares of children(0-14) and senile population(60+)
Demographic dividend in India:
  • India is in the middle of a demographic transition.
  • This is evident from its declining fertility rate which currently is 2.0, median age of 29 years, and a falling dependency ratio (expected to decrease from 65% to 54% in the coming decade).
  • This provides a window of opportunity towards faster economic growth.
Prerequisites to reap DD:
  • Better skills and education for employability
  • Improved health for an improved human capital
  • Job creation to absorb both men and women
Challenges in achieving DD:
  • The demographic transition can turn into a demographic disaster without proper policies.
  • The increase in the working-age population may lead to rising unemployment, fuelling economic and social risks.
  • The proportion of jobs in the unorganised sector is rising due to lack of skills in work force.
  • Reducing Rural wages in increasing demand for MGNREGA.
  • Impact of COVID, inflation, reducing private investment etc.
How can India achieve the true potential of its demographic dividend? 
  • India needs to Invest more in children and adolescents..
  • Investment in health care which is still around 1% of GDP.
  • Work on Skill development of workforce.
  • Need to increase female workforce participation.
  • Need to address diversity among states.
  • Cooperative federalism and conducive environment among states.
  • Reversal of state specific employment laws like Haryana, MP
Related Questions:
  1. “Demographic Dividend in India will remain only theoretical unless our manpower becomes more educated, aware, skilled and creative.” What measures have been taken by the government to enhance the capacity of our population to be more productive and employable? (UPSC Mains 2016)
  2. Comment on the challenges for inclusive growth which include careless and useless manpower in the Indian context. Suggest measures to be taken for facing these challenges. (UPSC Mains 2016)
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