Lucknow: Taking a grim view of malnutrition among children in Uttar Pradesh, where about three crore children between 0-5 years are affected, Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav on Wednesday said a proper strategy would be worked out to tackle it.

Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav assured of all possible help in dealing with the problem of malnutrition in the state and said, "directives to initiate steps in this regard have been issued to the chief secretary of the state."

Akhilesh while speaking to a delegation of MPs associated with 'Citizens Alliance Against Malnutrition' said that a proper strategy would have to be worked out for achieving this goal and people’s awareness was also essential.

Later at a press conference, Dimple Yadav, SP MP and wife of Akhilesh, said UP CM has agreed in principle on setting up "nutrition mission" and has also issued necessary directives to senior officials in this regard.

"Officials have been asked to formulate a work-plan by taking into consideration the directives of the union government as well as the steps taken by other states in this regard," she said.

"There are about three crore children in the age group of 0-5 years facing malnutrition in the state and every fifth child here is malnourished," Dimple who is among the group of parliamentarians associated with the cause said.

The group including Supriya Sule, Harsiomrat Kaur Badal, Ering Ninong, Neeraj Shekhar, Jai Panda, Madhu Gaur and Jayant Chaudhary besides Dimple Yadav which is visiting different states to take stock of the situation, was on a visit to the state today and also met the chief minister.

Talking to newspersons later they said that they have apprised the Chief Minister about the situation and suggested measures required for improvement.

To a question, Jai Panda said that though all the states have schemes to deal with malnutrition, because of "lack of proper monitoring and implementation" it is on the rise.

Rising above political affiliations, young MPs, media and civil society was creating awareness on this issue, Panda said.

Citing the 2005-06 national family health survey, Panda said that 40 percent children in the age group of 0-5 years are malnourished while in, UP it is 41 percent.

Harsimrat Kaur, to another question, said that the issue of malnutrition is also linked to gender discrimination along with poverty.

Besides, lack of knowledge also leads to the problem, she added.


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