Government schemes reduce cases of malnutrition among children in Dakshina Kannada

Source: TNN | Published on 18th November 2019, 12:07 PM | Coastal News |

Mangaluru: The implementation of Ksheera Bhagya scheme and serving eggs to schoolchildren has seen significant results in Dakshina Kannada district. After the implementation of the scheme, cases of severely malnourished children in Dakshina Kannada have dropped from 723 in 2013 to 53 till date.

Sundara Poojary, deputy director, women and child development department, gave full credit to the government schemes, which have managed to eradicate high malnourishment among children.

“In 2010, the number of highly malnourished children was 2,358 and when the scheme was implemented it was reduced to 723. After that, the number started to drop by half every fiscal year, from 723 to 486 in 2014. In 2015 it further slipped to 242 and as of now district has just 55 such children. We are confident that the number will be reduced to nil in another two or three years,” Poojary, told reporters.

Interestingly, half of the highly malnourished children aged 0-6 years are found in Mangaluru taluk including the city area. Others are from Puttur, Belthangady and a few are from Sullia. “The reason for healthy children in taluks like Sullia, Puttur or Belthangady is due to their food habits, which is wholesome.”

The Ksheera Bhagya scheme and egg for malnourished children was launched on August 2013 in co-ordination with the KMF. Under the scheme, children are provided 150 ml milk per day for 5 days in a week. Apart from it, highly malnourished children are given Rs 2,000 for buying supplements and medicine. They are also given more food from anganwadi centres, said Poojary.

The official said that the reasons for high malnutrition are both medical and hereditary. Also there is a problem specific to this region — malnourishment among Kudubi community. “In general, they are not malnourished but because of their physical appearance, they are categorised under malnourished children. Otherwise they are healthy and active,” he explained.

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