Population Development In Meghalaya

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REVIEW OF LITERATURE

2.1 HUMAN POPULATION
According to Census-2011, the total population of Meghalaya is 29.67 Lakhs, an increase from 23.19 Lakhs in 2001. The total population growth in this decade was 27.95 percent while in the previous decade it was 29.94 percent. The population of Meghalaya constitutes about 0.25 percent of Indian population in 2011. The sex ratio is 989 females per 1000 males. Meghalaya has a population density of 132 individuals/km2.

2.2 HISTORICAL ACCOUNT OF SHIFTING CULTIVATION IN THE NER
Aier and Changkija (2003) stated that shifting cultivation has been practiced in the NER for centuries and still remains a major land-use practice today. It provides the basis for subsistence agriculture, maintenance of cultural values and social stability for the people living in low population densities in the NER (as cited in Hazarika, 2006). Over a 100 different tribal ethnic minorities of the region practice shifting cultivation. Landless people and lowland migrants have also been observed to practice this type of cultivation (Saikia, 2014). Satpathy et al. (2003) reported that the total estimated area in the NER under this cultivation system is 1.98 million ha accounting for 87% of the total shifting cultivation area in the country (as cited in Deb et al., 2013).
Shifting cultivation in the NER has often been related to the Neolithic agricultural system. It may have developed as an adaptation of the Neolithic people of the region to the hilly terrain which
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