Mukhyamantri Suposhan Abhiyan, the state-wide campaign which was launched on 2nd October 2019 the 150th anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi, has yielded commendable results. As a result of the coordinated steps taken under Mukhyamantri Suposhan Abhiyan along with the integrated plan of various schemes, Chhattisgarh has achieved great success in eradicating malnutrition in children. As on January 2019, 4 lakh 33 thousand 541 children in the state were identified to be malnourished. As on May 2021, nearly one-third or 32% of these children i.e. one lakh 40 thousand 556 children have become free from malnutrition. This is a major achievement in the fight against malnutrition. Malnutrition rate in the state has significantly declined in a short span of time, thanks to the efficient leadership and visionary thinking of Chief Minister Mr. Bhupesh Baghel.
Considering the rate of malnutrition and anemia among women and children shown in the data of National Family Health Survey-4, Chief Minister Mr. Baghel initiated the campaign to eradicate malnutrition and anemia in the state. According to National Family Survey-4, 37.7 percent children below 5 years of age in the state were suffering from malnutrition and 47 percent women in the age group of 15 to 49 years were suffering from anemia. It was observed that maximum of the malnourished children were from tribal and remote forest areas. State government took this as a challenge and launched state-wide Mukhyamantri Suposhan Abhiyan on the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi, to reach the goal of ‘Malnutrition Free Chhattisgarh’. Public participation was also ensured to make the campaign a success.
Suposhan Abhiyan was started as a pilot project in some gram panchayats of forest region including Naxal-affected Bastar area of the state, which was carried forward through innovative programs like distribution of hot nutritious food through Panchayats in Dantewada district and ‘Laika Jatan Thaur’ in Dhamtari district. Arrangements were made to provide hot-cooked food under Suposhan Abhiyan by ensuring better utilization of District Mineral Trust fund. Considering the success of the scheme, Chief Minister Mr. Baghel expanded the scheme to in the entire state. Under this campaign, in addition to the supplementary nutritional food given to the identified children at the Anganbadi center, arrangements have been made to distribute free nutritious food at local-level to the malnourished women and children. Nutritious and delicious food made from eggs, laddoos, gram, jaggery, sprouted grains, milk, fruits, groundnut and jaggery chikki, soya brisket, porridge, soya chikki and munga bhaji along with hot-cooked food are also being provided to the beneficiaries. Awareness has also been created about locally available vegetables and nutritious items, as a result of which the nutrition-level of children and women has started improving. In collaboration with the health department, iron folic acid, anthelmintic tablets are being provided to the anemia affected. To achieve the goal of ‘Malnutrition-free Chhattisgarh’ in the next three years, Department of Women and Child Development, Health Department and other departmentscoordinated efforts are making consistent and coordinated efforts.
Despite the closure of all Anganbadi and Mini Anganbadi centers due to Corona Virus (Covid-19) crisis, Anganbadi workers and assistants of 51 thousand 455 Anganbadi centers in the state distributed ready-to-eat nutritious food to 28 lakh 78 thousand beneficiaries at their doorstep. Under the Supplementary Nutrition Food Programme, ready-to-eat is being distributed to the children of age group 6 months to 6 years, pregnant, lactating women and adolescent girls. Anganbadi has been reopened with the consent of the public representatives and parents in the COVID infection-free places in the state. This decision to reopen aanganbadis was taken to maintain the victory over malnutrition and to prevent the impact of COVID-19 on the health of children.
Under Mukhyamantri Suposhan Abhiyan, the district-wise status of children who were identified as malnourished as of May 2021 is as follows. In Balod district, 12 thousand 481 children were identified as on January 2019, out of which 1402 children have been cured of malnutrition. Similarly, 6032 children out of 30 thousand 917 in Balodabazar, 14 thousand 106 children out of 27 thousand 352 in Balrampur-Ramanujganj district, 3633 children out of 15 thousand 753 in Bastar, 354 children out of 12 thousand 429 in Bemetara, 3993 out of 12 thousand 429 children in Bijapur, 8492 out of 29 thousand 354 in Bilaspur, 2168 out of 8115 in Dantewada, 605 out of 7144 in Dhamtari, 6983 out of 12 thousand 810 in Durg, 5173 out of 11 thousand 658 in Gariaband, 8463 out of 17 thousand 869 malnourished children identified in Janjgir-Champa district have been cured of malnutrition.
Similarly, 5784 out of 15 thousand 341 children in Jashpur district, 7022 out of 9038 in Kanker, 3011 out of 13 thousand 146 in Kabeerdham, 1447 out of 14 thousand 47 children in Kondagaon, 2473 out of 17 thousand 965 children in Korba, 2696 out of 7850 children in Koriya, 1473 out of 19 thousand 153 in Mahasamund, 648 out of 10 thousand 242 in Mungeli, 1622 out of 3626 in Narayanpur, 16 thousand 358 out of 24 thousand 41 in Raigarh, 8323 children out of 25 thousand 456 in Raipur, 10 thousand 97 children out of 28 thousand 386 in Rajnandgaon, 7009 children out of 19 thousand 273 in Sarguja, 3332 children out of 6486 in Sukma, and out of the 23 thousand 716 children identified as malnourished in Surajpur district, 7857 children have been cured from malnutrition