Skip to main content

At 55%, "developed" Gujarat has more anemic women than national average; situation worse among children

By Rajiv Shah
A new Government of India interactive atlas has revealed that Gujarat’s 54.9% of women in the age group 14-49 are anemic as against the national average of 53%. Out of 21 major Indian states, the data show, 14 states have a lower percentage of anemic women than that of Gujarat.
The seven states where the percentage of women is more anemic than Gujarat are: Jharkhand 65.2%, West Bengal 63.2%, Haryana 62.7%, Bihar 60.3%, Andhra Pradesh 60%, Telangana 56.7%, and Tamil Nadu 55.1%. All data are for 2015-16.
Things are no better with pregnant women. The atlas shows that Gujarat’s 51.3% pregnant women are anemic, as against the national average of 50.3 per cent, with as many as 15 major states out of 21 having lesser percentage of anemic pregnant women.
The six states with a higher percentage of anemic pregnant women are – Jharkhand 62.6%, followed by Bihar 58.3%, Haryana 55%, West Bengal 53.6%, and Andhra Pradesh 52.9%.
The atlas reveals a major gender gap, too, with just about 21.7% of men found to be anemic. This is against the national average of 22.7%.
It also shows rural-urban divide, with 57.7% rural women as against 51.6% urban women anemic in Gujarat. Things are no different for men: Here, 25% rural men and 17.8% urban men are found to be anemic.
The further atlas finds the least percentage of anemic women is in Kerala, 34.2%. Interestingly, Kerala has a still lower percentage of anemic pregnant women, 22.6%, lower than any other major state of India. 
A higher percentage of anemic pregnant women would have its consequences on infants. The atlas shows that 62.6% of children in the age group 6 to 59 months are anemic in Gujarat, which is worse than all major 21 states but five – Haryana 71.1%, Jharkhand 69.9%, Madhya Pradesh 68.9%, Bihar 63.5%, and Uttar Pradesh 63.3%.
Based on official data, the atlas has been developed by the Hyderabad-based National Institute of Nutrition (NIN). It is claimed to be India’s first online nutrition atlas. NIN operates under the Indian Council of Medical Research.
Among the sources it has banked upon are data from the National Nutrition Monitoring Bureau, the National Family Health Survey, the World Health Organisation and other public databases. It provides not just state-wise but also district-wise data.
Notably, the all-tribal district of Dangs in Gujarat has the highest percentage of anemic women, 72.3%, while Surat, perhaps the most urban district of Gujarat, has the least percentage of anemic women, 39%.
Interestingly, however, the all-tribal district of Dahod has 56.3% of anemic women, considerably lower Gandhinagar district (which as the state capital) 65.8%, and Ahmedabad district, the state’s commercial capital, 62.9%.
As for children in the age group 6 to 59 months, while the highest percentage of anemic children are found to be in Kutch district (81.4%), the state capital Gandhinagar with 73.7% and the commercial capital Ahmedabad with 76% are found to be not far behind.
Calling nutrition as “one of the key determinants of development”, the introduction says, the idea of the online atlas is to help India’s policy makers, programme managers, researchers and other stakeholders, who “need” information/data on nutritional status of population groups at country level and at regional/state levels.”

Comments

Anonymous said…
V informative piece from a journaist of high credibility.
alka singh said…
It is very sad about our country. It is not about poverty but women carelessness and ignorance about themselves.from many well to do families also rather than having balanced and nutritious food junk food is a main part of their diet.awareness programme should be run at a large scale for the families.

TRENDING

Savarkar 'criminally betrayed' Netaji and his INA by siding with the British rulers

By Shamsul Islam* RSS-BJP rulers of India have been trying to show off as great fans of Netaji. But Indians must know what role ideological parents of today's RSS/BJP played against Netaji and Indian National Army (INA). The Hindu Mahasabha and RSS which always had prominent lawyers on their rolls made no attempt to defend the INA accused at Red Fort trials.

Kailash Satyarthi NGO makes slum kids laud RSS founder Hedgewar as freedom fighter

By Rajiv Shah  In a move which may raise many an eyebrow, a Nobel laureate Kailash Satyarthi-supported child rights NGO has celebrated Prime Minister Narendra Modi-intitiated Har Ghar Tiranga by commemorating 75 freedom fighters by "narrating their famous deeds and chanting slogans of each leader", including Mahatma Gandhi, Jawaharlal Nehru, Subhas Chandra Bose, Lala Lajpat Rai and a person who had little or nothing common with the freedom movement -- RSS founder Keshav Baliram Hedgewar. A communique from the Kailash Satyarthi Childrens Foundation (KSCF), which organised the event, said among the freedom fighters celebrated by 75 children on the occasion of 75 years of India's independence placing photographs of each freedom fighter included that of Hedgewar, who is alleged to have maintained a distance from Indian Independence movement led by Gandhiji. According to Hedgewar's biography, when Gandhiji launched the Salt Satyagraha in 1930, Hedgewar sent information ev

Savarkar in Ahmedabad 'declared' two-nation theory in 1937, Jinnah followed 3 years later

By Our Representative One of the top freedom fighters whom BJP and Prime Minister Narendra Modi revere the most, Vinayak Damodar Savarkar, was also a great supporter of the two nation theory for India, one for Hindus another for Muslims, claims a new expose on the man who is also known to be the original proponent of the concept of Hindutva.

Unlike other revolutionaries, Hindutva icon wrote 5 mercy petitions to British masters

By Shamsul Islam*  The Hindutva icon VD Savarkar of the RSS-BJP rulers of India submitted not one, two,or three but five mercy petitions to the British masters! Savarkarites argue: “There are no evidences to prove that Savarkar collaborated with the British for his release from jail. In fact, his appeal for release was a ruse. He was well aware of the political developments outside and wanted to be part of it. So he kept requesting for his release. But the British authorities did not trust him a bit” (YD Phadke, ‘A complex Hero’, "The Indian Expres"s, August 31, 2004)

Golwalkar's views on tricolour, martyrs, minorities, caste as per RSS archives

By Shamsul Islam*  First time in the history of independent India, the in-charge minister of the Cultural Ministry in the current Modi government, Prahlad Singh Patel, has glorified MS Golwalkar, second supremo of the RSS and the most prominent ideologue of the RSS till date, on his birth anniversary, February 19. In a tweet he wrote : “Remembering a great thinker, scholar, and remarkable leader #MSGolwalkar on his birth anniversary. His thoughts will remain a source of inspiration & continue to guide generations.”

Gujarat's 'low-key' communalism: right-wing groups compete for anti-Muslim space

By Rajiv Shah  Noticing the emergence of a novel trend, a just-released report based on a fact-finding team's observations following its interaction in particular with Hindu and Muslim political activists, administrators and police officials, has claimed that a major reason why chasm between the two communities in Gujarat has lately reached new heights is, a veritable competition between Hindu right-wing groups and leaders to capture the existing communal space. Titled "Hindu Right, Communal Riots and Demolitions: Emerging Pattern of Communal Riots in India", the report has been prepared against the backdrop of what it calls "low intensity" communalism which has characterised rioting in Gujarat in the recent past, especially after the 2002 communal carnage, one of the worst in Independent India. Especially focusing on riots in two Gujarat towns, Himmatnagar and Khambhat, which took place on April 10, the day clashes broke also out in different parts of India on

Gujarat govt 'contradicts' MHA memo while freeing Bilkis Bano gangrape convicts

By Our Representative  The All-India Progressive Women's Association (AIPWA) has said that Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah "must answer for the decision to free Bilkis Bano's gang rapists." In a statement, AIPWA has wondered, "What was the basis of the Gujarat Government’s decision to free those men on August 15, 2022, to celebrate what the PM Modi calls India’s Amrit Kaal? Was remission and freedom a reward for rape and murder of Muslims?" The statement comes amidst an Ahmedabad-based legal rights non-pofit, which took up the cause of Bilkis Bano and fought her case right up to the Supreme Court, Centre for Social Justice (CSJ), suggesting that the Gujarat government move to allow remission to the convicts contradicts the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) Guidelines for Granting Special Remission to Prisoners on August 15, 2022 (75th anniversary of Independence), January 26, 2023, and again on August 15, 2023. Citing the MHA notificat

Need to ask at today's 'critical juncture' of India's history: Whose Freedom@75?

By Fr Cedric Prakash SJ*  The official propaganda states that: “Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav is an initiative of the Government of India to celebrate and commemorate 75 years of independence and the glorious history of it's people, culture and achievements. This Mahotsav is dedicated to the people of India who have not only been instrumental in bringing India thus far in its evolutionary journey but also hold within them the power and potential to enable Prime Minister Narendra Modi's vision of activating India 2.0, fuelled by the spirit of Aatmanirbhar Bharat. The official journey of Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav commenced on 12th March 2021 which started a 75-week countdown to our 75th anniversary of independence and will end post a year on 15th August 2023.” So as India completes a landmark seventy-five years of freedom – a platinum jubilee – the only question one needs to ask at this critical juncture of the country’s history is “whose freedom@75?” Since March 2020, it has been a di

Har ghar tiranga: will the hungry bellies raise their hand to unfurl the national flag?

By Bhabani Shankar Nayak*  Indians are going to unfurl the tricolour to celebrate the 75th anniversary of India's Independence on 15th of August 2022. Indian freedom struggle has not only shaped India as a modern constitutional democracy but also shaped the nature of state, society and citizenship. The anti-colonial, anti-capitalist, anti-feudal and anti-imperialist struggle were the four pillars of Indian freedom struggle that laid the foundation of a sovereign nation state promised to pursue a society based on socialist, scientific and secular values to ensure egalitarian citizenship rights without any form of discrimination. These inalienable values are central to the unity, integrity, peace, prosperity and progress of India as a multicultural society and secular state. It is time to celebrate these values and promises of Indian independence, a product of struggles and sacrifice of millions of working-class people across the country. India at 75 is still a young nation but old e

RSS, Sangh Parivar consider tricolour as "state flag" and not "national flag"

By Teesta Setalvad* Today, when the nation has been independent for 67 years, the Sangh Parivar is set to launch ‘Tiranga yatras’ and Satyagrahas to defend the honour of the flag and the nation. Yet when the Indian people were involved in the decades-long struggle for freedom against British imperialism, the RSS was conspicuous by its absence in the struggle. When thousands of people faced lathis, bullets and jail sentences for hoisting the tiranga and participated all over the country in satyagraha during the Civil Disobedience and Quit India movements against the British Raj, the Sangh publicly took the stand that it would not take part in the movement and seldom missed the opportunity of assuring the British rulers that they would keep to the right side of colonial law and avoid any clash with the authorities. Of course the reason given for this was that the Sangh was secretly strengthening itself and would take on British imperialism only when it was strong enough to do so! A simil