A day after Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said child malnutrition was a "national shame", Women and Child Welfare Minister Krishna Tirath on Wednesday said her ministry has sought nearly Rs 2 lakh crores in the next plan to for schemes to eradicate the problem.
"We have sought about Rs 2 lakh crore in the next five-year plan for the Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS) scheme, which is several times the amount sanctioned in the previous plan," Tirath said.
The ICDS scheme is being restructured, Tirath added.
"We are considering a proposal to include the employment of an extra worker in all 'Anganwadis'. The extra worker would go to each home and meet mothers and their children and provide counselling related to families about nutrition," she said.
The ICDS has witnessed revision in norms for nutrition, Tirath added.
The Ministry of Women and Child Development has taken note of Hunger and Malnutrition Report (HUNGaMA) Report which was released by the Prime Minister, Tirath told reporters.
"The central government cannot tackle this problem alone and needs the support of state governments," Tirath said.
She said malnutrition was a multi-sectoral problem and other ministries too had a role in tackling it.
Tirath said though there was a tendency among states not to highlight malnutrition figures, she had repeatedly said that hiding the figures was no solution.
"We have requested the states to form Nutrition Councils at the state and district level and also to invest in periodic statewide surveys in order to obtain specific reports and have offered assistance in this regard,"she said.