India's health minister on Wednesday lamented opposition from several states to a government plan to introduce sex education from next year, a report said.
"In our country, we do sex. But we don't want to talk about it and that is why we have a billion population," Health Minister Anbumani Ramadoss said at an event to mark World Population Day.
"In our close-knit society, we have to enlighten and create awareness among our children," he was quoted as saying by the Press Trust of India.
The government has been fighting with around a dozen out of 29 states to introduce sex education in a bid to spread awareness of AIDS and condoms as well as family planning.
The Council of Boards of Education of India, which sets the teaching curriculum for schools, has prepared a package on sex education, according to a Times of India report earlier this year.
"We have recommended to make it a mandatory subject to be taught twice a week," Ramadoss said.
"They will be the losers if awareness is not created at the right age," the minister said of state opposing the plan.
Schools in the conservative nation, which ironically brought the world the Kama Sutra, have shied away from educating youngsters about such topics as human reproduction.
But the minister said education would not provoke promiscuity.
"We are not taking up sex education in a blatant manner, but in a subtle way," said Ramadoss. "We don't want to create controversy. But we have 55 per cent population that falls in the reproductive age and we have to create awareness among them."