Preceding the strategy change was a realisation that the approached favoured by the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA)—that overall socio-economic development is key to controlling population—is seen to have failed in the Indian context. The view, placing the onus of healthcare on the government rather than on the targeted families, is also championed by ngos.
That such an approach was inapplicable here is the assessment of the National Commission on Population (NCP), a body set up in May 2000 after India crossed the billion mark. In a strategy paper on family planning submitted to the Union cabinet—Outlook is exclusively privy to it—the NCP has expressed reservations about the UNFPA-led campaign to stabilise population. Instead, it recommends a return to the proactive programme to promote the two-child norm as a national goal.