India's Baby Nargis One of World's Seven-Billionth Inhabitant

Monday, 31 October 2011, 09:56 Hrs
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Bangalore:The world's population touched another milestone today as India and the Philippines welcomed "symbolic" seventh-billionth babies.

A baby girl, born to 23-year-old Vinita and Ajay at a local community health centre at 7.20am in Mall on the outskirts of Lucknow, was welcomed as the seventh-billionth baby, Bhagyeshwari, executive director of NGO Plan India, which is conducting the exercise, said.

The girl has been named Nargis, she said.

The Philippines also welcomed a seven-billionth baby at a government hospital in Manila.

Danica May Camacho was born just after midnight.

As the world's population touched the landmark seven billion mark, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon called for "unity of purpose" among people across nations to address problems of climate change, economic crisis and inequality.

"Some say our planet is too crowded. I say we are seven billion strong. But we will only be able to use that strength for the benefit of all if our societies are built on mutual respect and understanding," Moon said.

Moon said the world must come together "on this special day... in the name of the global common good."

UN Population Fund's (UNFPA) executive director Babatunde Osotimehin said actions taken now will decide whether the future of the seventh billion baby will be healthy, sustainable and prosperous or marked by inequalities, environmental decline and economic setbacks.

"The world must seize the opportunity to invest in the health and education of its youth to reap the full benefits of future economic development or else face a continuation of the sorry state of disparities in which hundreds of millions of people in developing nations lack the most basic ingredients for a decent life," Osotimehin said.

He said planning and the right investments in people will empower them to make choices that are not only good for themselves, but also for a world of seven billion.
Source: PTI
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