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PM asks states to review ICDS scheme

Immunisation status under ICDS continued to be poor, says Manmohan Singh.

india Updated: Jan 16, 2007 17:55 IST

Concerned over the poor implementation of the Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS), Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has asked States to set up an institutionalised review process at their level to exclusively deal with the scheme.

"There is strong evidence that the programme has not led to any substantial improvement in the nutritional status of children under six. Our prevalent rate of under-nutrition in this age group remains one of the highest in the world," he said in a letter to Chief Ministers of all States and Union Territories.

Immunisation status under ICDS continued to be poor and the coverage status was also a matter of concern and about 11 crore children, out of a total of 16 crore in the 0-6 age group, remained unreached, Singh said adding "these are startling figures and the situation calls for urgent action."

The Prime Minister said the states could also lay special emphasis on the programme status in areas with concentration of minority communities and preponderance of Scheduled Castes and Tribes.

"My own reading of these reports and surveys lead me to believe that proper implementation of the programme critically depends on political will, decentralised monitoring and meticulous attention to day-to-day operational issues," he said.

He cautioned that problems like irregular functioning of Anganwadi Centres, inability to provide hot, cooked food and leakage of food material meant for infants would persist otherwise.