Dear team NCERT,
We wish to bring to your kind attention the alarming rise of diabetes in India and also health degradation arising out of close contact/ relative marriages.
As you may be aware, India has close to 65 million diabetes-infected population. A study by the country’s Diabetes Foundation warns that an estimated 50 percent of the urban population does not know how to prevent the illness. From an economic perspective, diabetes costs the government billions of dollars, ranging from medical expenses to lost income.
Another issue that is of utmost importance – is the degradation of the health of the young population due to hereditary health issues being carried forward via marriages among close blood relatives. The problem in such close relative marriages surfaces when one of the partners carries a defect in any of the genes associated with some form of illness. When you marry within the community with one who may also have such a family defect, the child inherits two copies of this faulty gene and thus has the defect. Babies born out of such wedlock could have a multiplicity of congenital problems. Heart problems top the list, followed by nervous disorders, limb anomalies, and so forth. We in South India too have communities that practise consanguineous marriages. Gotram (ancestral lineage) is taken seriously and marriage does not occur, generally, between a man and a woman of the same gotram. The gotram system is formally thought to keep a genetic distance and thus thought to be “safer” from a consanguinity point of view.
We request the Indian government, as part of its health initiatives to spread awareness among young children in schools about the perils of diabetes and issues arising out of congenital marriages in addition to sex education. This will pave a long way for a healthier young India.
Hope the revised textbooks contain relevant lessons on this subject.
1. Text in Blue points to additional data on the topic.
2. The views expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of PGurus.
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