Mission Poshan Abhiyaan– Its Features, Benefits, & Impact on India’s Economy.

The Prime Minister’s Overarching Scheme for Holistic Nutrition, or Poshan Abhiyaan, is the official name of the Government of India’s flagship program, Poshan Abhiyaan. Children, expectant women, and nursing moms are the focus of this flagship program. On March 8, 2018, the prime minister introduced the Poshan Abhiyaan in honour of International Women’s Day. In this case, the prime minister wants to address malnutrition as a national priority and put it under control as quickly as feasible.
One of the well-known government programs that are significant for the UPSC Exam’s current events and Indian politics segments is Poshan Abhiyaan, popularly referred to as the National Nutrition Mission (NNM).

Goals of The POSHAN Abhiyan

The POSHAN Abhiyan’s main goal is

  • Lowering the prevalence of undernutrition
  • Improving the nation’s nutritional situation for youngsters
  • Enhancing adolescent, child, pregnant, and breastfeeding nutritional outcomes

Activities Covered under POSHAN Abhiyaan

These are plans for year-round activities that will mobilise the community, field employees, and nutrition officials. A few of these are:
September month is observed as POSHAN Maah throughout the nation to promote community mobilisation and increase involvement in efforts to improve the nutritional condition of the neighbourhood.

In the theme areas centered on POSHAN MITRA (contemporary, IT-based, Traditional, and Regional Activities), POSHAN pakhwada places a focus on identifying and celebrating healthy children as well as integrating contemporary and traditional practices for a healthy India. Every year, it lasts for two weeks in the month of March.

The community is encouraged to consume local, seasonal products via POSHAN Vatika or Nutrition Gardens. The main goals of POSHAN Vatika are to improve and raise awareness about dietary diversity in the community, to ensure a supply of nutrition through organically grown fruits and vegetables, to provide different food groups to undernourished children, and to maintain healthy soil.

Poshan Abhiyaan's Key features

With a budget of Rs. 1.31 trillion, the Poshan Abhiyaan program is a centrally supported initiative that will run from 2021–2022 through 2025–2026. Under the PM Poshan scheme, the centre is fully responsible for the cost of the food grains, their administration, and transportation, however, the state and the centre divide the cost of cooking and paying chefs and staff in a 60:40 ratio.

A social audit.
Social audits will become a requirement for every school in every district to monitor the progress of the national nutrition mission. It will include university and college students in monitoring the Poshan Abhiyaan scheme’s implementation through the field trip.

Garden of Nutrition:
Providing the pupils with more micronutrients will encourage the growth of nutrition gardens at the school. The school will also be encouraged to host culinary contests and plan meals based on the veggies sold in nearby markets.

Nutrition expert:
In each school, a nutritionist will be hired whose job it will be to frequently assess students’ weight, hemoglobin levels, BMI, and other vital signs.

App for Poshan Tracking:
To improve and increase transparency in the delivery of nutrition services, an app was created. All Anganwadi workers (AWW), Anganwadi centres (AWC), and beneficiaries may be monitored and tracked in real-time.

The Poshan Abhiyaan 2.0 seeks to assist about 11.80 crores of people as well as the youngsters enrolled in the nation’s 11.20 lakh schools. Through this program, in addition to the children enrolled in classes 1 through 8 in government and government-aided schools around the nation, midday meals have also been made available to the children of Balvatika. One of the main recommendations of the 2020 National Education Policy was to extend midday meals to pre-primary kids.

POSHAN Abhiyaan-related events

Community-Based Events (CBE) are hosted in every Anganwadi in the nation on the eighth and the twenty-second of the month. The events’ topics include regional holidays and customs like Suposhan Diwas & Annaprasan Diwas, celebrating adulthood and getting ready for preschool at Anganwadi centres, and spreading public health messaging to increase nutrition indicators and decrease disease, among other things.

Village Health Sanitation Nutrition Day (VHSND): The Gramme Panchayat and the Health department collaborate to hold the VHSND day on the 15th of every month.

Poshan Abhiyaan's significance

  • Poshan Abhiyaan (National Nutrition Mission) aims to significantly improve the nutritional condition of children aged 0 to 6, adolescent girls, pregnant women, and nursing mothers over the course of the following three years, starting in 2017–2018.
  • The Abhiyan seeks to achieve convergence with several initiatives, including the Pradhan Mantri Matru Vandana Yojana, the National Health Mission, the Swachh-Bharat Mission, the Janani Suraksha Yojana, and the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme.
  • Direct cash transfers are used to target stunting, undernutrition, and anemia in adolescents & women, which is a significant step toward the eradication of malnutrition.
  • The mission’s cash transfers contribute to the family’s income by supporting it further.
  • The program aims to eliminate malnutrition from the nation by using more technology to assure service delivery, changing attitudes through incentives, and setting specified objectives to be attained gradually.

Major Highlights of POSHAN Abhiyan

The following are some POSHAN Abhiyaan Program’s highlights:

  • The POSHAN Abhiyaan is a comprehensive program that would oversee, direct, establish goals for, and direct activities linked to nutrition across Ministries.
  • Poshan Abhiyaan oversees several programs that help combat malnutrition in India.
  • Maternal nutrition, infant and young child feeding customs, and treatment protocols would be the main emphasis of POSHAN Abhiyaan.
  • The two primary elements of the POSHAN Abhiyan are Multi-Sectoral Interventions & Jan Andolan.
  • It encourages Anganwadi Workers (AWWs) to utilize IT-based technologies in their local communities.
  • To enter beneficiary information into forms, the Poshan Tracker App was created particularly for Anganwadi centres & Anganwadi personnel.
  • It encourages governments and UTs to reach their objectives.
  • By use of different outreach initiatives and audits, it is creating Nutrition Resource Centres (NRCs) to raise nutrition knowledge among the general people.

Poshan Maah, part of the National Nutrition Mission

In September, we commemorated Poshan Maah of Poshan Abhiyaan 2021. The main goal was to raise public awareness of the value of nutrition, and the Poshan Maah placed a strong emphasis on social change, behavioral modification, and communication. These efforts helped to increase public awareness about the value of nutrition through assertive dialogue and helped to educate a large number of people about how to communicate this importance.

  • The basic tenets of the POSHAN MAAH centre on prenatal care, effective anemia, breastfeeding, growth monitoring (height), food, ), sanitation, girls’ education, hygiene, and healthy eating.
  • 60 million males, 130 million children, and over 120 million women were contacted for the Poshan Maah implementation under the Poshan Abhiyaan. In under 30 days, it was a successful event that touched more than 30 crore people.

Covid-19's Effects on Malnutrition

The following are the effects of Covid-19 on malnutrition in India:

  • The availability, stability, accessibility, and resource distribution of food have all been threatened by the Covid-19 outbreak in India.
  • It could worsen India’s current malnutrition issue among children and women.
  • Recent research suggests that the covid-19 epidemic may worsen malnutrition in India by causing livelihood losses and causing systemic disruptions in the food and healthcare sectors.

Millets Must Be Introduced in POSHAN Abhiyaan

The federal government requested state/UT administrations to investigate the feasibility of including millets within the PM POSHAN Abhiyaan Scheme in February 2022, particularly in districts where millet eating is a common cultural practice.
Although it is a component of the National Food Security Mission (NFSM), established in October 2007, the Government of India’s Millet Mission is an independent initiative.

Advantages of millets

Millets or Nutri-cereals, such as Mandua/Ragi, Bajra, & Jowar, are rich in antioxidants, proteins, B-complex vitamins & minerals. The following are some of the main advantages of millets:

  • enhances immunity
  • decreases anemia
  • enhances cognitive development
  • possessing antibacterial properties
  • encourages both nutrition security & food system security.

What is Poshan Tracker?

The Ministry of Women and Child Development of the Government of India has released the Poshan Tracker application. The Poshan Tracker assists in monitoring the nutritional value, particularly for individuals who are malnourished. It offers a more powerful strategy for fostering children’s and women’s health. The National e-Government Division (NeGD), began in March 2021.
Poshan Tracker has the following characteristics:

  • It is compatible with the systems and programs of other ministries. It monitors the operations of the Anganwadi Centre (AWC), the deliveries made by (AWWs) Anganwadi Workers, and the management of breastfeeding and pregnant women to enhance their nutritional value.
  • It maintains track of all home delivery operations, including the distribution of hot cooked meals (HCM), infant and pregnancy immunisations, & take-home rations (THR) among other things.
  • A monthly examination of the children covered by this application is conducted by AWWs.
  • Numerous health indicators, including the prevalence of wasting, underweight, stunting, etc., are measured using this app by WHO guidelines.
  • Having a mechanism for home visit notifications and keeping attendance records, especially for duty bearers, is helpful.

About Nutritional Council of America (NCA)

An apex organisation created by the Ministry of Women and Child Development (MoWCD) is the National Council on Nutrition (NCN).

NCN's (National Council on Nutrition) duties

The NCN- National Council on Nutrition performs the following duties:

  • It is the supreme body for convergence and coordination in nutrition.
  • It creates general principles and standards and employs a sustainable approach to all nutrition-based programs’ monitoring.
  • It oversees the acquisition of growth monitoring equipment.
  • To discuss the problem of malnutrition in India, the Council convenes twice a year.

Targets Particular to the POSHAN Abhiyan

The POSHAN Abhiyan especially intends to combat the following:

  • 2% less stunting per year.
  • 2% less undernutrition each year.
  • yearly reduction of 3% in anaemia
  • Annually decrease low birth weight by 2%.

Final Words

By 2022, it is still the goal to eradicate malnutrition in India. To solve India’s persistent problems with food insecurity & malnutrition through its multi-ministerial convergence project known as Poshan Abhiyaan 2.0 and ensure that its benefits would reach households at the grassroots level, continued aggressive steps are necessary.

Frequently Asked Questions

Describe Poshan Abhiyaan.

Through the multi-ministerial convergence program known as POSHAN Abhiyaan, the Indian government aspires to have completely eradicated malnutrition in the nation by the year 2022.

When is Poshan Maah celebrated in India?

As part of the POSHAN Abhiyaan, the Rashtriya Poshan Maah is celebrated each year in September.

When was POSHAN Abhiyaan first introduced?

On March 8, 2018, the Hon. Prime Minister officially began Poshan Abhiyaan in the Jhunjhunu region of Rajasthan.

Who was behind the inception of India's Poshan Abhiyaan National Nutrition Mission program?

On March 8, 2018, the day before International Women’s Day, Prime Minister Narendra Modi debuted the Poshan Abhiyaan program in the Rajasthani town of Jhunjhunu.

What are the goals of the National Nutrition Mission?

The reduction of issues associated with stunting, anemia, low birth weight, and undernutrition is the particular goal of Poshan Abhiyaan. It sought to cut down on anemia by 3%, low birth weight by 2%, and undernutrition by 2% per year.

Why does Poshan Maah is celebrated in the month of September?

Rashtriya Poshan Maah, which raises awareness of the value of healthy nutrition among Indian youth, is observed annually in September to promote broader community involvement.

What are the four foundational pillars of Poshan Abhiyan?

Poshan Abhiyan is built on a few important pillars that are crucial to its success. We have listed those pillars below:
CAS (Common Application Software) for ICDS
Change in Behaviour
New Approaches to Training and Capacity Building
Grievance Resolution

What is Poshan Abhiyaan's purpose?

Poshan Abhiyaan’s primary goal is to help pregnant women, teenage females, breastfeeding moms, and children (0–6 years) who are undernourished.

What advantages does Poshan Abhiyaan offer?

Poshan Abhiyaan, or the NNC- National Nutrition Mission, has the purpose of addressing the problem of child malnutrition in India. It meets the dietary requirements of nursing kids, mothers, and expectant women.

When was the National Nutrition Policy of India put into effect?

In 1993, the Indian government put into effect the National Nutrition Policy (NNP).