Detected: 157 malnourished children in Mira-Bhayandar

Bhayandar: In a shocking revelation that exposes the highly insensitive attitude of the district administration, as many as 157 malnourished children, including 36 falling under the severe acute malnutrition category, have been detected from various parts of the twin-city of Mira-Bhayandar.

As per parameters, 121 kids have been categorised under the moderate malnutrition category. However, due to the administrative apathy, the malnourished children are deprived of basic facilities at the anganwadi centres run by the social welfare wing under the schematic norms of the Integrated Chi­ld Development Services (ICDS).

The serious flaws were brought to light by former legislator, Vivek Pandit, who heads a government panel constituted to review various schemes being implemented for the welfare of tribal community in the state.

On a state-wide drive to check the implementation status, the panel led by Vivek Pandit visited the tribal-dominated pockets and anganwadis in the twin-city on Friday and stumbled upon a number of irregularities.

“While the condition was appalling at most anganwadis, the quality of nutritive diet was equally sub-standard. Moreover the Mira Bhayandar Municipal Corporation is least bothered in addressing such a serious issue.

The concerned officials have failed to maintain records, which indicated no proper monitoring of activities at centres,” said Pandit.

There are 72 anganwadis, of which 39 are located in urban areas. Apart from suggesting measures to ensure that children in tribal regions were not deprived of facilities, the panel will seek stringent action against those responsible for the mess, informed Pandit.

Responsible to ensure food and nutrition for mothers and children, in accordance to guidelines prescribed under the National Food Security Act, anganwadis play an important role in tackling malnourishment for which separate central funds are earmarked for a package of integrated services consisting of supplementary nutrition, immunization, health check-up, referral and education service.

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