"KHUSHI" is an AWARENESS CAMPAIGN, launched by Vedanta Resources plc, with a focus to sensitize people towards care for the underprivileged and deprived children – their Nutrition – Education – Health and overall development. Join Khushi on facebook at and send motivational stories at . LET US MAKE INDIA A CHILD MALNOURISHED FREE NATION..


IANS  |  New Delhi  
The Delhi High Court has sought a response from the central government on a plea seeking directions to prosecute parents who force their minor child into the labour market.
A division bench of Justice G. Rohini and Rajiv Shah Endlaw issued notice to the labour ministry and ministry of woman and child welfare and fixed Oct 29 as the next date of hearing.
The court was Wednesday hearing a public interest litigation filed by advocates Anu Mehta and Rubinder Pal Ghumman seeking formulation of guidelines for handling cases of child labour to ensure that every offender, including a delinquent parent, be dealt with sternly.
The plea said guidelines were required to create a state of 'zero tolerance' to stop child abuse.
"Children are immature, tender and incapable of guarding in situations of economic and physical exploitation as they lack the understanding, maturity and strength to protest against exploitation wrecked at the hands of parents," it said.
It also sought measures and comprehensive mechanisms to deal with child-related laws and crime against children as, the advocates claimed, there was an inherent flaw and lacunae in the Child Labour (Prohibition and Regulation) Act and Children (Pledging of Labour) Act.
No punitive action was directed against erring parents who actively exploit their children, the advocates contended.
"State mechanism must be created to investigate the role of parents in child abused otherwise the government will not be able to reach the root of the problem and the recovery of children subjected to trafficking will be re-routed to the erring parents," the plea said.
It said it has been seen in a growing number of cases that parents actively push their minor children into the labour market, acting with collusion with exploiters and child traffickers and thus have "active role in participation in perpetrating crimes towards their own children".

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Aug 17 2014 : The Times of India (Delhi)

The one hour given to midday meals (MDM) in schools is an opportunity for discussing a variety of issues related to sustainable development. The MDM scheme, introduced mainly to encourage kids to enroll and remain in school can be used as teaching aid, argue the authors of a recently-compiled manual on education for sustainable development for elementary schools published by National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT).

`Towards a Green School' says that MDM provides a ready setting for discussing "resource conservation" (fuels used and cooking practices), pollution (type of cooking device), socio-cultural exchanges (types of food and taste), health and others.

Treating sustainability and environment as yet another subject isn't enough anymore.

United Nation's `Decade of Education for Sustainable Development' will be up in 2015 but there's much to be done.

While ESD requires “infusion of environmental and sustainability perspectives into the school curriculum“ what has actually happened, as the manual writers observe, is that “at the school level the responsibility for this lies exclusively with teachers teaching the environmental component, thus limiting it to a subject-centric role.

The manual uses several Delhi government schools as examples of institutions that are doing it right. A government school in Baprola has an `eco-park', a gazebo made of waste pipes and a water harvesting system. The students make compost with the surplus being sold. Government Girls' Senior Secondary School (No. 1) in Tilak Nagar ran a “my plant in my school“ drive-each student sowed a sapling and took care of it. As water at the school was in short supply, some kids brought water from home.

The communal midday meal, however, is one exercise all elementary school children take part in and the manual, preparedly by Kavita Sharma of NCERT's department of elementary education, stresses on using this. Teachers may encourage students taking MDM to inquire into where ingredients are grown, how they are procured, in what quantities and at what costs and even how they are stored and cooked. This, in turn, will help initiate discussions on hygiene, the link between the nature of ingredient and geography and nutrition.

The manual encourages teachers to undertake audits--including natural light, ventilation, cleanliness, ambient temperature, noise, accessibility, seating and water use to find out exactly how `green' their schools are.

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 Subodh Varma
4th August, 2014

Bihar Has Dubious Distinction, Maximum Percentage Of Underweight Kids: ICDS

About 2.3 crore children in India, up to 6 years of age, are suffering from malnourishment and are under-weight, according to a status report on the anganwadi (day care center) programme, officially known as ICDS.

This staggering number amounts to over 28% of the 8 crore children who attend anganwadis across India.

The status report includes state-wise data for underweight children. In Bihar, the proportion of under-weight children is nearly 50%. Andhra Pradesh (37%), Uttar Pradesh (36%), Rajasthan and Chhattisgarh (both 32%) are some of the other large states with a high proportion of children being malnourished.

Delhi reported that a shockingly high 35% of the nearly 7 lakh children who attend anganwadis were underweight. This shows that the extent of poverty and malnutrition amongst the urban poor is comparable to rural areas despite all the advantages the cities offer.

In all the northeastern states except Assam, Tripura and Meghalaya, less than 10% of children were underweight children. Other large states with a comparatively low rate of malnutrition are Maharashtra (11%) and Tamil Nadu (18%).

There has been no comprehensive survey of children's malnutrition in India since the last National Family and Health Survey in 2005-06. That had estimated 46% of children in the 0-3 years age group as underweight after surveying a sample of about 1 lakh households across the country . The data from anganwadis provides a snapshot drawing upon a much larger base.

There were an estimated 16 crore children of ages up to 6 years in the country, as per the 2011 Census. Of these, about half seem to be attending the anganwadis going by the records of the programme. Most of those attending anganwadis belong to poorer sections. But large sections do not get access to it. A 2011 Planning Commission evaluation had said that there is a shortfall of at least 30% in coverage.

There are over 13 lakh anganwadis which look after the kids and provide `supplementary nutrition' to them.

As part of their duties, personnel at each anganwadi weigh the attending kids every month and keep a record.

TOI contacted anganwadi workers from several states to confirm the weighing procedures. Till recently, two weighing instruments were provided for each anganwadi center.