Poshan Abhiyaan - National Nutrition Mission

Government schemes are very important for the UPSC exam. They are a part of the polity and governance segments of the IAS exam. In this article, you can read all about the Poshan Abhiyaan programme of the Indian Government for UPSC.

Poshan Abhiyaan UPSC Notes:- Download PDF Here

Poshan Abhiyaan

Poshan Abhiyaan, also known as the National Nutrition Mission (NNM), was launched in 2018 (although the programme was being implemented from 2017) by the Government of India with the aim of tackling the malnutrition problem prevalent in India.

  • The chief objective of the mission is to reduce the level of under-nutrition and also enhance the nutritional status of children in the country.
  • The mission is a multi-ministerial initiative and aims at removing malnutrition from the country by 2022.
  • Poshan Abhiyaan is India’s flagship scheme to improve the nutritional outcomes of adolescents, children, pregnant women and lactating mothers.
  • The mission leverages technology and convergence between various modules and departments.
  • The term ‘Poshan’ in the name of the programme stands for ‘Prime Minister’s Overarching Scheme for Holistic Nutrition’.
  • The programme has specific targets for reducing stunting, anaemia, under-nutrition and low birth weight.
  • According to ‘Mission 25 by 2020’, the National Nutrition Mission aims to achieve a reduction in stunting from 38.4% to 25% by 2022.
  • The mission also encompasses mapping of various other schemes related to malnutrition and enabling synergies through ICT-based real-time monitoring system, robust convergence between the schemes, incentivising states and UTs for meeting the set targets, and optimising Anganwadi centres’ functioning, apart from conducting social audits.
    • These other schemes include the Pradhan Mantri Matru Vandana Yojana (PMMVY), Janani Suraksha Yojana, Scheme for Adolescent Girls (SAG), Swachh Bharat Abhiyaan, PDS, National Health Mission, etc.
    • For Anganwadi centres, the mission envisages the following:
      •  Giving incentives to Anganwadi Workers (AWWs) for using IT-based tools.
      • Elimination of registers used by AWWs.
      • Measuring the height of children at Anganwadi centres.
  • Another component of the mission is the gradual scaling up of the interventions under the World Bank assisted Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS) Systems.
  • The implementing agency is the Ministry of Women and Child Development, GOI. 
  • The NITI Aayog also plays a pivotal role in the mission. The National Council on India’s Nutritional Challenges, which has been set up under the Poshan Abhiyaan, has the Vice Chairperson of NITI Aayog as its Chairperson.
    • The council is also called the National Council on Nutrition or NCN.
    • The NCN offers policy directions to address nutritional challenges and review programmes for the same.
    • It is a national-level coordination and convergence body on nutrition.

To know more about the National Nutrition Strategy released by the NITI Aayog, click on the linked article.

Specific Targets of NNM

The National Nutrition Mission aims at achieving the following:

  1. Reduce stunting by 2% annually.
  2. Reduce under-nutrition by 2% annually.
  3. Reduce anaemia by 3% annually.
  4. Reduce low birth weight by 2% annually.

Poshan Abhiyaan Pillars

The government has named the following as the pillars of the Abhiyaan:

Poshan Abhiyaan Pillars

Rashtriya Poshan Maah

Under the Poshan Abhiyaan, every year, the month of September is observed as a Poshan Maah. Several activities are undertaken to spread awareness of nutrition in the community. Here, the focus is on Social Behavioural Change and Communication (SBCC).

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