India comprises one-sixth of the world’s population and one-third of the global burden of undernutrition. Between 2006 and 2016, India made progress in reducing stunting among children below five years; the progress, however, was not uniform across all its states.

A notable approach to addressing maternal undernutrition during pregnancy in India in recent years has been the integration of hot-cooked meals (HCM) for pregnant and lactating women together with the provision of other health/nutrition services.

The Supplementary Nutrition Programme (SNP) under Anganwadi Services and the POSHAN Abhiyaan are important programmes to address the issue of malnutrition in the country.

This brief’s focus is solely on core nutrition specific interventions for pregnant women, lactating mothers, and children under six years of age. These address the immediate determinants of fetal and child nutrition and development. Nutrition-sensitive interventions are discussed where relevant.

Devoting public resources to reducing micronutrient deficiencies in children is essential for improved health, and is associated with large economic returns in the long-run through better productivity, lower health costs, and intergenerational transmission of these benefits.

State-wise statement of funds released and utilisation under POSHAN Abhiyaan earlier known as National Nutrition Mission till December, 2019. There are no separate beneficiaries under POSHAN Abhiyaan. It ensures convergence of all nutrition related schemes. Under POSHAN Abhiyaan, Smart phones are provided to Anganwadi Workers and Lady Supervisors for using ICDS-CAS(Common Application Software) Application. As on 29thFebruary, 2020, the total number of Anganwadi Centres using ICDS-CAS Application are 6,25,659 across 28 States/UTs.

In collaboration with Public Health Foundation of India, WFP has conducted a study on Take Home Rations (THR) which are distributed to children aged 6 to 36 months and pregnant and lactating mothers across the states and Union Territories of India.

Question raised in Lok Sabha on Restructuring of ICDS, 19/07/2019. Anganwadi Services scheme provides six child development related services i.e. Supplementary Nutrition, Pre-school Education, Health & Nutrition Education, Immunization, Health check-up and Referral Services.

Question raised in Rajya Sabha on Food Supply in ICDS, 27/06/2019. The Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS) Scheme is a Centrally Sponsored Scheme implemented by States/UTs.

Anganwadi services have a poor reach among key beneficiaries – the poorest of the poor and uneducated mothers – according to a paper published in a WHO bulletin recently.

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