About the scheme
- POSHAN Abhiyaan (also known as National Nutrition Mission) is a flagship programme of the Ministry of Women and Child Development that aims to improve nutrition amongst children, pregnant women, and lactating mothers.
- Launched in 2018, it is a multi-ministerial convergence mission with the vision to ensure attainment of malnutrition free India by 2022.
- The mission targets to reduce stunting, under-nutrition, anemia (among young children, women and adolescent girls) and reduce low birth weight by 2%, 2%, 3% and 2% per annum respectively.
- The mission also strives to achieve a reduction in Stunting from 38.4% (NFHS-4) to 25% by 2022 (Mission 25 by 2022).
- Amongst India’s most serious yet marginally addressed development challenges is malnutrition, which contributes significantly to the country’s disease burden.
- Even as National Family Health Survey 2015-16 (NFHS-4) data shows that the country’s malnutrition rates have gone down, half of all children from families in the lowest income quintile are still stunted (51 percent) or underweight (49 percent).
- Today, India is home to the largest number of stunted children (46.6 million) and wasted children (25.5 million) in the world. More than a third of children under five suffer from stunting and wasting and 40% of children between one and four are anaemic.
- According to the NFHS-4, over 50% of pregnant and non-pregnant women were found to be anaemic.
- To ensure community mobilisation and bolster people’s participation, every year the month of September is celebrated as Rashtriya Poshan Maah under POSHAN Abhiyaan across the country.
- The activities in the Poshan maah are focussed on Social Behavioural Change and Counselling (SBCC). The broad themes are: antenatal care, optimal breastfeeding (early and exclusive), complementary feeding, anaemia, growth monitoring, girls’ education, diet, right age of marriage, hygiene, and sanitation, eating healthy and food fortification.
Why in News?
- The Women and Child Development Ministry has clarified that the Aadhaar Card of children is not mandatory for availing the benefits of the POSHAN Scheme.
- The Ministry is ensuring Aadhaar ID of Mother is entered in Poshan Tracker so that delivery of nutrition is ensured to the beneficiary.