After ample flak for failing to rein in the rising instances of malnutrition deaths in the Palghar, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led Maharashtra government has decided to include Jawahar, one of the worst-affected talukas of the district, under a Centre’s flagship rural development scheme.
The state rural development department has decided to include the town under the Union government’s Shyama Prasad Mukherjee Rurban Mission to ensure more funds for the overall development of the taluka.
“Under the scheme, the state will focus on improvement to schools, overall cleanliness, providing good quality roads, health care services, effective drainage and digital accessibility to the village. The project will be implemented by converging all centrally sponsored, central government and state government schemes pertaining to rural and tribal development,” an official from the state rural development department said.
Incidentally, BJP’s Pankaja Munde, who heads the state rural development department, recently visited the Mokhada and Jawahar talukas in the Palghar district to take stock of the rising malnutrition deaths, shortly after tribal development minister Vishnu Savra’s visit to the district.
The Palghar district has reported 12 malnutrition-related deaths in the past 30 days with around 7,200 children up to six years of age suffering from severe and moderate acute malnutrition. The state government has been criticised by the local residents for its neglect of the region.
Besides Jawahar, the state has also decided to include Malegaon in Nashik and Maval from Pune district under the Mission. The talukas will get Rs30 crore for development works as part of the first phase of the mission.