Meagre hike for feeding malnourished kids criticised

To address the rising malnutrition cases in the State, the government may increase the allocation for each child by Rs 2 under the Integrated Child Development Scheme in the upcoming budget.

However, the civil society and those actively involved in campaigning against malnutrition have slammed the meagre hike, which is said to be based on unscientific grounds.

Addressing the media, the Forum to End Malnutrition has said that despite repeated suggestions to the government to develop a scientific model to address the situation of malnutrition, the government has failed to understand the issue.

“Increasing the allocation by Rs 2 per child is not the answer. What needs to be understood is that the needs of each child between the age group of 6 months to five years is different. The government needs to deploy a scientific methodology in addressing the concerns of each child in each age group,” said Matthew Phillip, Executive Director of Sichrem.

The forum alleged that the government lacked political will to address the problem.

Quoting the recent government re-survey of malnourished children in Raichur, Y Mariswamy, State Organiser of Samajika Parivarthana Janandolana, said records show nearly a 50 per cent increase in the number of malnutrition cases among children.

“When the first survey was conducted in September last year, the number of cases recorded in Raichur was 4,531. It has now gone up to 8,397 in the re-survey conducted by the government. It is a slap on the face of the government,” he said.

Lokayukta raids

Lauding the efforts of the Lokayukta in conducting raids on the officials of the Department of Women and Child Development (DWCD), the forum demanded the government to act by arresting all the accused. The Lokayukta had raided three officials, including IAS officer Shamla Iqbal, under the suspicion that they had received kickbacks from Christy Fried Grams Industry for awarding them the contract to supply food packets to children in the anganwadis across the Sta

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