Medicine: Mass Sterilization

"Many a Progeny—Many an Agony," read posters on Bombay buses last week. Teeming India is officially committed, more than any other nation in the world, to birth control. At 1,800 "family planning centers" across this nation of 403 million, social workers fit diaphragms and counsel sari-swathed village women on simpler methods of contraception (sample prescription: if nothing better is handy, a suppository of cotton wadding soaked in cooking oil may suffice). Despite back-country ignorance and considered opposition from leaders of India's 5,500,000 Roman Catholics, contraceptives are gaining slow acceptance in India. But more must be done if the government is to...

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