Telangana government has requested the Centre to continue the ‘Poshan Abhiyan’ programme to help overcome nutritional deficiency among pregnant women, lactating mothers and children below five years age. The scheme is set to conclude on September 30.
Minister for Women Development and Child Welfare Sathyavathi Rathod along with delegation of MP M. Kavitha, MLA B. Haripriya Naik, Warangal Mayor and former MP G. Sudharani called on Union Minister for Women and Child Welfare Smriti Irani in New Delhi on Friday and made several requests on the schemes of the department.
Ms. Rathod requested the Union Minister to restore the reduced Central share in Anganwadi centres, implement Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana to Anganwadi teachers and helpers, increase the quota of millets such as sorghum and pearl millet given under the nutrition programme. She also sought Centre’s assistance in increasing the production of ‘Balamritam’, a nutritional supplement, stating that there was a big demand from several States for its supply.
She requested the Union Minister to supply 5,427 tonnes of sorghum and 2,714 tonnes of pearl millet to Telangana for 2021-22 under the nutritional supplement programme. She also brought to the Union Minister’s notice that withdrawal of some components under Integrated Child Development Scheme (ICDS) and reduction of Central share in women and child welfare schemes stating that it was hampering the interventions for pregnant women, lactating mothers and children below 5 years age.
Seeking restoration of Central share to that of 2017, Ms. Rathod said the Central share in wages of Anganwadi teachers and helpers under ICDS to 25% from 60% in the past. As result, the burden on the State government had increased to 75% from 40% in the past. The Union Minister respondent positively for visiting the State to examine the women and child welfare schemes being implemented in Telangana.
Later, Ms. Rathod stated that the Union Minister had assured that Poshan Abhiyan would be continued beyond September 30 by strengthening it further and there was no intention to stop or discontinue it. She also assured to examine the State’s plea for higher Central share in the women and child welfare schemes.