The main reasons behind the registration of all births and deaths in India are for statistical requirements. The registration information is needed to understand the happenings in terms of the people born versus the number of deaths, to calculate information like the mortality rate, the reasons for deaths, and specific diseases. Currently, all births and deaths are not registered in the country with the statistics changing depending on the State. States with poor infrastructure in registering infant deaths also have significantly higher infant mortality rates.
The statistical portion of the birth certificate records the parent’s education, socio-demographic data, and prenatal history, which allows health officials to identify regional health issues and tells us about the health of mothers and babies. It allows the country to identify public health trends such as teenage pregnancy, birth defects, and HIV. It also helps determine government funding for public health. This can also helps structure what programs get priority for government funding schemea such as the Abstinence and Teen Pregnancy Prevention Program, Headstart, and Children with Special Healthcare Needs.
Issues that people without birth certificates face
Across the country, children without birth certificates, mostly the marginalised, face challenges getting admitted to private schools despite the Right To Education Act specifying the school admissions do not need any documents. Documents were not always a requirement for education until around the year 2000. The change around that time made it mandatory for people to start showing their birth certificates to make sure they were the right age for their class.
It is mandatory to register every birth and death within 21 days under the Registration of Births and Deaths Act, 1969. According to the latest figures by the Civil Registration System of the Office of the Registrar General of India, 84.9% of all births and 79.6% of all deaths were registered in 2017. UNICEF backs this up and states that children whose births have not been registered remain invisible, which is not ideal. These children end up in illegal activities, human trafficking, and so on since they do not have a birth certificate and are one of the statistics registered in the country.
Older people applying for a birth certificate
Adults who do not have a birth certificate should visit the Municipal Corporation or Gram Panchayat of their place of birth depending on where they registered at the time that they were born. Individuals will have to provide their information like their place date and time of birth, documents like aadhar card address proof will also be required for this process.
Once the documents are verified birth certificate will be issued to the applicant. However, this process will only work if registration was done at the time of birth. It does not work if they are trying to begin with the application process, which would then have to be coordinated with the Registrar of births and deaths and need a lot more documentation.
Some websites assist with the entire birth certificate process if they need assistance with the right forms or documentation.