Selection potential based on differential fertility and mortality has been computed for 24 Himalayan populations classified into four groups: Himalayan populations with Asian affinities (HPA), Brahmans, Rajputs, and Scheduled Castes (Shilpkars). Irrespective of the methodology followed, the total index of selection was found to be highest (0.794) in Barbatiyas (HPA) and lowest (0.428) in Rajputs. The relative contribution of fertility component (If) to the index of total selection (It) is higher than the corresponding mortality component (Im) in all 24 groups. An analysis of correlation and regression on different components of the indices of selection performed among these 24 Himalayan populations revealed that the contributions of If in determining It are stronger than Im. Further, both If and Im are strongly associated with It and account for 76% and 67% of total variability in It, respectively. Examination of the relationship of the selection potential with the differential altitude and social categories showed a decrease in the index from high altitude to low altitude. Similarly, an inverse relationship was found between various indices and social categories. Himalayan populations with Asian affinities (HPA) in the present study reveal higher values of selection potential. Interestingly, these populations invariably reside in high altitude areas where health and communication infrastructures are poorly developed. Thus, the differential pattern of fertility and mortality among the Himalayan populations indicates that they are passing through a stage of transition, as is evident from the decrease in various selection indices. It is also apparent that groups that are less developed socioeconomically, as well as those inhabiting high altitude regions, are lagging behind in this process.
Kapoor, A. K.; Kshatriya, Gautam K.; and Kapoor, Satwanti
"Fertility and Mortality Differentials among the Population
Groups of the Himalayas,"
5, Article 7.
Available at: http://digitalcommons.wayne.edu/humbiol/vol75/iss5/7