Cabinet approves National Nutrition Mission | Current Affairs, Current Affairs 2017

Cabinet approves National Nutrition Mission

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The government has approved the establishment of a National Nutrition Mission to address serious incidence of malnutrition and stunting among infants in the country.
The decision to launch the ₹9,000-crore nutrition mission was taken by the Cabinet on Thursday. The mission has set an ambitious goal of reducing incidence of stunting among children from 38.4 per cent now to 25 per cent by 2022, Minister for Women and Child Development (WCD) Maneka Gandhi told reporters on Friday
The mission will be jointly launched by the ministries of WCD, Health and Family Welfare and Water Resources, together with NITI Aayog.
The mission, to be launched in January next year, will be rolled out in 162 backward districts in six States, including Andhra Pradesh, Bihar and Chhattisgarh initially, and will be expanded further to 315 districts in the current financial year, the Minister said. The rest of the country will be covered over the next two years.
Giving details, WCD Secretary Rakesh Shrivastava said the beneficiaries will be enrolled in Aadhaar for better monitoring of the implementation. Out of 42 lakh children who will be covered in the first phase, 50 per cent are already Aadhaar-seeded. “We plan to increase the Aadhaar seeding to 85 per cent by the end of the month,” he said.
Emphasizing the need for linking the mission to Aadhaar, Gandhi said a pilot study on child nutrition programmes in Assam showed that there 3 lakh ‘fake’ children enrolled for the programme. On this account alone, the government was losing ₹30 lakh per day and nearly ₹100 crore a year.
“This is the case of just one State. Now one can imagine how much pilferage has been happening if it is extrapolated to the entire country,” she said.
The mission will strive to reduce stunting, under-nutrition, and low birth weight by 2 per cent and anaemia (among young children, women and adolescent girls) by 3 per cent annually over the three-year mission period.

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