Images of India : India’s billionth baby turned 15 this month !

img004Fifteen years back, India’s official population reached the mark of one billion with the birth of a baby girl ‘Aastha’, on May 11, 2000. Aastha means (faith in Hindi) was born to Anjana and Ashok Arora at 5.05 am in New Delhi’s Safdarjung Hospital. Weighing six pounds 13 ounces at birth, she was unanimously chosen to be designated as one billionth Indian among the other babies born that day. With an estimated 42,000 births per day in India, it was impossible to know exactly where the billionth baby would be born, but the government staged the milestone as part of a public campaign to encourage Indians to have smaller families. India is currently the second most populous nation in the world, with over 1.27 billion people that is more than a sixth of the world’s population. In 2011, Plan International, a child rights group, declared a baby girl born in India as the world’s seven billionth person. Baby Nargis, the daughter of a poor farmer, was chosen to focus attention on the ills of female foeticide and India’s skewed sex ratio. India is projected to be the world’s most populous country by 2025, surpassing China.