Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma has said that two-child policy is the only way to eradicate poverty and illiteracy in the Muslim community in the state.
"It's for the welfare of the minority community and I don't think there is any resistance from them. All Assam Minority Students' Union met me twice last month and openly welcomed (the 2-child proposal), admitting that Muslims in Assam need population control measures," Sarma told news agency ANI on Tuesday.
"I am meeting Muslim intellectuals in July, and I am sure they will support state government's policy," he said while referring to the the new population norms in Assam.
The CM said that he has invited 150 Muslim intellectuals to meet him on July 4. He has also plans to hold discussions with various socio-political organisations representing the community.
According to Sarma, a PTI report said, Assam has been able to manage its annual population growth at 1.6 per cent, but when "we lift the veil off the statistics, it is found that the Muslim population is growing at a rate of 29 per cent (decadal), whereas the Hindus are growing at 10 per cent".
Sarma had recently said that his government was planning to introduce a population policy with a two-child norm, and families adhering to it can avail benefits under certain schemes.
"We will gradually incorporate a two-child policy for availing government benefits. You can consider this an announcement," he had said.