Dear Editor, Please refer to the article” Scarp Anganwaris and Mid-Day Meal Schemes”, published in your paper on July 10, 2019. Written by Dr Ram Chandra Sharma, has explained the main features of Anganwari centres, but has not justified the reason for scarping the same. Besides, the author has not mentioned anything about the drawbacks of Mid-Day Meal Schemes. In this way, there is no coordination between the title and main text of the article. It looks as if the author has skipped some contents or the same had been overeditted thereby distorting the main objective of the author. But the author seems to be right in the context of mismanagement of the schemes. However, it is a fact that both of the schemes are very important for providing health and nutrition facilities to the lactating and pregnant women as well as to the children. But the schemes are not being implemented properly. Most of the Anganwari centres are running in the papers and the financial as well as material resources are being wasted in the name of food and nutrition for mothers and children. In fact, the children in the age group of three to five years are admitted in the preprimery and nursery schools and the same children are also shown enrolled in the Anganwari centres. In this way, the public funds are misappropriated. There is no question of health and nutrition for mothers. In this context, it is suggested that there should be involvement of local residents in the management of Anganwari centres. And the second option is that the ICDS should be merged with education department to incorporate MDM scheme in it. Regarding MDM scheme, the main objective of the scheme is to provide balanced diet to the school children as well as to enhance enrollment in the government schools. This scheme is also very important for health and nutrition and balanced growth and development of children. But its implementation is defective. The school teachers are involved in management of MDM, which is not desirable. Besides there are also problems in procurement of raw materials. In this way, the main objective of the scheme is also being defeated. It is desirable that there should be a separate wing for the management of MDM. Though, the government has assigned these schemes to the PRIs yet it doesn’t look sound. The department of rural development and PRI is already tainted and painted with corruption and we can’t expect any improvement in this context. Any how, public participation in the schemes can bring a lot improvement. The right way for public participation is to involve the concerned parents in the entire process of management. However it is desirable that suggestions for improvement may be invited from the interested people. O P Sharma AMO Retd, Bagnoti Nowshera.
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