Skip to main content

High malnutrition: Continue, expand Odisha's Nutrition at Doorsteps scheme, urge NGOs

By Our Representative 

The Nutrition at Doorstep scheme, initiated by the Odisha government, has successfully promoted food security and addressed malnutrition in rural households, a recent survey by the Odisha Shramajeebee Mancha and the Mahila Shramajeebee Mancha in 650 villages of Kandhamal district has revealed.
The study finds that 96% of households used vegetable seeds provided by the government to grow nutritional kitchen gardens. There is growing demand in communities to receive this support. Therefore, according to the study, its members have urged the government to carry on with this programme, especially in tribal-populated districts, to effectively address malnutrition and anemia in the state.
"It's great to hear that the government has taken steps to address malnutrition by providing fruit and vegetable saplings as well as a vegetable mini-kit to 8 lakh identified malnourished families last year. The government has also shown a commitment to nutrition in the latest Nutrition Budget 2023-24, increasing the share of the Nutrition Budget in the total annual expenditure from 19.31% in 2020-21 to 23.03% in 2023-24”, the study states.
However, Anjan Pradhan, convener of Odisha Shramajeebee Mancha, says, this scheme must be expanded to at least 15 lakh households, as it has successfully promoted food security and addressed malnutrition in rural households. According to him, the government should increase the number of seeds in the kit and provide separate winter-season vegetable seeds by May month so that households can grow them before the rain season approaches.
Meanwhile, a delegation of civil society organisations (CSOs) has submitted a memorandum to the Agriculture and Farmers' Empowerment Minister, Ranendra Pratap Swain, urging the renewal of this programme.
Says a state government report, children in 4,93,941 households are suffering from stunted growth, 1,31,099 with wasted development, 2,69,784 underweight children, and 4,53,883 anemic pregnant women as of last year. “It highlights the urgent need to continue and expand the 'Nutrition at Doorstep' scheme to promote food security and tackle malnutrition in Odisha”, believes the study.



'Modi govt's assault on dissent': Foreign funds of top finance NGO blocked

By Rajiv Shah  In a surprise move, the Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India, has cancelled the foreign funding license of the well-known advocacy group, Centre for Financial Accountability (CFA), known for critically examining India's finance and banking sectors from human rights and environmental angle.

Misleading ads 'manipulate, seduce, lure' to market unhealthy harmful food

By Our Representative  The Nutrition Advocacy in Public Interest (NAPI) in its new report “50 Shades of Food Advertising” has sought to expose how seductive, luring, manipulative or deceptive these advertisements can be. Consequences of such advertising are increased intake of unhealthy food products that is associated with obesity and diabetes, it says. 

A Hindu alternative to Valentine's Day? 'Shiv-Parvati was first love marriage in Universe'

By Rajiv Shah*   The other day, I was searching on Google a quote on Maha Shivratri which I wanted to send to someone, a confirmed Shiv Bhakt, quite close to me -- with an underlying message to act positively instead of being negative. On top of the search, I chanced upon an article in, imagine!, a Nashik Corporation site which offered me something very unusual. 

Swami Vivekananda's views on caste and sexuality were 'painfully' regressive

By Bhaskar Sur* Swami Vivekananda now belongs more to the modern Hindu mythology than reality. It makes a daunting job to discover the real human being who knew unemployment, humiliation of losing a teaching job for 'incompetence', longed in vain for the bliss of a happy conjugal life only to suffer the consequent frustration.

'Failure of governance': India, China account for 54% pollution-related deaths globally

By Vikas Parsaram Meshram*   A recent report jointly prepared by UNICEF and the independent research organization Health Effects Institute has been released, and the statistics within it are alarming. It states that in 2021, air pollution caused the deaths of 2.1 million Indians, including 169,000 children who hadn't yet fully experienced life. These figures are indeed distressing and raise questions about why there hasn't been more serious effort in this direction, putting policymakers to shame. 

How US is using Tibetans to provoke conflict with China 'ignoring' India

By Lobsang Tenzin*  On July 12, US President Joe Biden signed the Resolve Tibet Act, and Tibetans cheered for it, believing that the law promotes a resolution of the dispute between Tibet and China. Is this true? First, let's look at the issue of the ownership of Tibet. 

August 9 to be observed as Corporates Quit India day: Top farmers' group

By Our Representative A recent general body meeting of the Samyukt Kisan Morcha (SKM), the top farmers' organisation, stated hat "there is no need for any illusion of change in the pro-corporate policies of the BJP-NDA government" following the recent elections in which BJP failed to achieve even simple majority. It insisted,  Prime Minister Narendra Modi "is hell bent" to continue 'business as usual' policies.

Over 3.8 billion animals at risk: India on crossroad in animal welfare practices

By Rupali Soni*  In a collaborative effort, the India Animal Fund and Dasra have unveiled their report , "Our Shared Future | Securing Animal Welfare, Human Wellbeing, and Sustainability in India." This landscape report provides a thorough overview of animal welfare and underscores its indispensable role within India's socio-economic and ecological frameworks. It also illustrates how animal welfare is intricately intertwined with public health, labor welfare, and climate resilience.

Tribals from 60 villages observe seed festival to 'protect' diversity of indigenous seeds

By Bharat Dogra*  Nearly sixty villagers are sitting on an open floor covered by a roof for shade but otherwise open on all sides. Women and men are present in equal numbers but the visibility of women is higher because of their colorful dresses.