Press Information Bureau
Government of India
Ministry of Women and Child Development
22 MAR 2023 6:36PM by PIB Delhi

Government has accorded high priority to the issue of malnutrition and is implementing SakshamAnganwadi and Poshan 2.0 (Mission Poshan 2.0) which includes key schemes such as the POSHAN Abhiyaan, Anganwadi Services and Scheme for Adolescent Girls as direct targeted interventions to address the problem of malnutrition in the country. The beneficiaries under the Anganwadi Services scheme are children in the age group of 0-6 years, pregnant women and lactating mothers. Supplementary nutrition is provided to beneficiaries in the form of Hot Cooked Meals at Anganwadi Centres and Take Home Ration (not raw ration).

Mission Poshan 2.0 seeks to address the challenges of malnutrition in children, adolescent girls, pregnant women and lactating mothers through a strategic shift in nutrition content and delivery and by creation of a convergent eco-system to develop and promote practices that nurture health, wellness and immunity. Steps have been taken to improve nutritional quality and testing in accredited labs, strengthen delivery and leverage technology under the 'Poshan Tracker' for prompt supervision and management of services.

Under Mission Poshan 2.0, focus is on diet diversity, food fortification, and popularizing use of millets. Nutrition awareness strategies under Poshan 2.0 aim to develop sustainable health and well-being through wholesome local foods to bridge dietary gaps. Dietary diversification in the Anganwadi platform encourages the consumption of micronutrient rich foods, viz., dark green leafy vegetables, lentils and vitamin C rich fruits. To reduce the malnutrition and anaemia in women and children arising due to deficiency of micro nutrients like Iron, Folic Acid and Vitamin B-12, under Supplementary Nutrition Programme of Anganwadi Services, Fortified Rice was allocated to 21 States/UTs during the 2nd quarter of FY 2021-22 and from the 3rd quarter of FY 2021-22 onwards only Fortified Rice is being allocated to all the State/UTs.

Further, as per the Mission Poshan 2.0 guidelines, millets need to be mandatorily supplied at least once a week and suitably integrated in Take Home Ration (not raw ration) and Hot Cooked Meals in a palatable form.

PoshanAbhiyan is a key component of Mission SakshamAnganwadi and Poshan 2.0. A novel feature of POSHAN Abhiyaan has been its focus on social and behavioural change communication (SBCC) thus paving way for a mass movement to promote transformative change, referred to as Jan Andolan. An important focus has therefore been on ‘Behaviour Change Communication’ or BCC to address inadequate and inappropriate infant and young child feeding practices, nutrition and care during pregnancy and adolescence.

Under PoshanAbhiyaan, Community Based Events or CBEs have served as a significant strategy in changing nutrition practices. The gatherings serve as a platform for disseminating essential messages and to counsel pregnant and lactating women, and their husbands/mothers-in-law on appropriate nutrition and health behaviour. The events are organised every month at Anganwadi centres (AWC) and primarily focus on promotion of maternal nutrition (Godhbharai) and/ or initiation of appropriate complementary feeding (Annaprasan). So far, close to 3.7 crore CBEs have been held across the country.

At the national level, the RashtriyaPoshanMaah is celebrated in the month of September across the country, while PoshanPakhwada is celebrated in the month of March.. Through these Jan Andolans, women and community, at large are sensitized on issues like importance of maternal nutrition, appropriate techniques of breastfeeding, importance of timely initiation of complimentary feeding etc. During PoshanMaah 2022, themes like MahilaaurSwasthya, BachchaaurShiksha, Gender Sensitive Water Management and Traditional Food for Women & Child were especially emphasized upon. Around 80% of activities reported were focussed on the key theme of ‘MahilaaurSwasthya, which included awareness drives on Anemia prevention, Anemia testing, camps on appropriate breastfeeding practices etc.

The achievements under Mission POSHAN 2.0 are as follows:

i. The Mission has been rolled out across all the 36 States/UTs. It covers around 730 Districts including 112 Aspirational Districts.

ii. Close to 11 lakh smart phones have been provided to Anganwadi workers. Besides, to promote regular growth monitoring, 12.53 lakh Growth Monitoring Devices such as Infantometer, Stadiometer, Weighing Scale for Mother and Infant and Weighing Scale forChild have been procured by States/UTs under the Abhiyaan.

iii. IT systems have been leveraged to strengthen and bring about transparency in nutrition delivery support systems. The ‘Poshan Tracker’ application wasrolled out on 1stMarch,2021 through National e-Governance Division (NeGD), as an important governance tool. Around 13.97 lakh AWCs have started using the ICT Application.

iv. A Web and App based ‘Grievance Redressal Cell’ has been established for effective service delivery and beneficiary feedback. Besides, a national Poshan Helpline has been made available for beneficiaries and the public. Through the Helpline a beneficiary can raise a concern about the services offered under Mission Poshan 2.0.

v. Streamlined Guidelines were issued on 13thJanuary, 2021 to ensure greater transparency and accountability and quality in nutrition service delivery.

vi. Around 60+ crore Jan Andolan based activities have been held. Moreover, the PoshanMaah conducted during the month of September 2022 witnessed approximately 17 crore Jan Andolan based activities throughout the country. Around 3.70 crore Community Based Events (CBEs) have also been organized ina convergent manner at Anganwadi Centres.

vii. More than 4 lakh PoshanVatikas have been developed and 1.10 lakh Medicinal Saplings have been planted across the country.

viii. More than 10 lakh Frontline Functionaries have been trained on thematic modules.

ix. Category wise beneficiaries registered under Poshan Tracker as on 28.02.2023:

Total Beneficiaries

Lactating Mothers

Pregnant Women














x. More than 90% of beneficiaries registered on the Poshan Tracker have been successfully Aadhar verified.

xi. For the first time, migration facility for pregnant women and lactating mothers from one AWC to another within and outside a State has been facilitated under the Poshan Tracker. Migration facility from one category to another category of beneficiary is also available. Integration of the Poshan Tracker with RCH portal of Ministry of Health & Family Welfare is under process.

xii. Best Practices on use of millets and improvement in nutritional status of severely acutely malnourished (SAM) children in districts were recognized and selected for the PM’s Award for Excellence for promotion of Jan Bhagidari in PoshanAbhiyaan on 21st April 2022. These best practices, shared with all States/UTs included Mission SampurnaPoshan in Asifabad, Telangana, MeraBachcchaAbhiyaan Model in Datia, Madhya Pradesh and Project Sampoorna in Bongaigaon, Assam.

xiii. The estimated number of underweight, malnourished and severely malnourished children under 5 years of age is obtained under National Family Health Survey (NFHS) conducted by the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare. As per the recent report of NFHS-5 (2019-21), the nutrition indicators for children under 5 years have improved as compared with NFHS-4 (2015-16). Wasting has improved from 21% (NFHS-4) to 19.3 % (NFHS-5), Under-weight has improved from 35.7% (NFHS-4) to 32.1% (NFHS-5) and stunting has improved from 38.4% (NFHS-4) to 35.5% (NFHS-5).

This information was given by the THE MINISTER OF WOMEN AND CHILD DEVELOPMENT, SMT. SMRITI ZUBIN IRANI in a written reply in Rajya Sabha today.