In 2011, India began releasing the findings of its 15th national census. We already knew that the country was enormous and that it would soon overtake China as the world’s most populous. There are currently just over 1.2 billion people in India – a figure that may be too large to grasp. The following graphic from The Economist is the best representation that I have seen so far:
Imagine all of Brazil living in Oregon – welcome to Uttar Pradesh. India is more than 11 times as densely populated as the United States. It’s population is expected to level off in the middle of the century at around 1.7 billion. But for all the Malthusian fear-mongering, this is not necessarily a problem. The emerging research argues that although growth must be contained, India is currently the beneficiary of the demographic dividends of its high population.