Empowerment and protection of women and children, and ensuring their wholesome development is crucial for sustainable and equitable development of the country. Various measures have been taken by Ministry of Women and Child Development to promote social and economic empowerment of women through cross-cutting policies and programmes, mainstreaming gender concerns, creating awareness about their rights and facilitating institutional and legislative support for enabling them to realize their human rights and develop to their full potential. Similarly, safe and secure childhood has also been ensured to our children through cross-cutting policies and programmes, spreading awareness about their rights and facilitating access to learning, nutrition, institutional and legislative support.
The key initiatives/achievements of the Ministry of Women and Child Development during the Year 2022 are as under:
Organisation of various Schemes of the Ministry into three verticals: To ensure better monitoring and efficient implementation, all the schemes being implemented by the Ministry for women and children in the country have been organised into three verticals, viz. (1) Saksham Anganwadi & Poshan 2.0 for Nutrition Support for Children, Adolescent Girls and Pregnant Women & Lactating Mothers; and for Early Childhood Care & Education (2) Mission Shakti for safety, security and empowerment of women (3) Mission Vatsalya for protection and welfare of children with enhanced outlay of Rs. 20,989 crores, Rs. 10,916 crores and Rs.1,02,031 crores respectively over the 15th Finance Commission Cycle.
Mission Saksham Anganwadi and Poshan 2.0
MoWCD issued the Scheme Guidelines for Mission Saksham Anganwadi and Poshan 2.0 on 01.08.2022. Also, the Integrated Nutrition Support Programme – Saksham Anganwadi and Poshan (2.0), Rules, 2022 dated 12.09.2022 was notified and rules were published on 06.10.2022. Under Saksham Anganwadi and Poshan 2.0, 2 lakh AWCs @40,000 AWCs per year in aspirational districts would be strengthened, upgraded and rejuvenated for improved nutrition and educational delivery. In FY 2022-23, all 40,000 Saksham Anganwadis have been identified in aspirational districts.
So far, Anganwadi workers have been provided with 11.22 lakh smart phones.
Besides, to promote regular growth monitoring of children, 12.65 lakh Growth
Monitoring Devices, such as Infantometer, Stadiometer, Weighing Scale for Mother and Infant, Weighing Scale for Child, have been procured by States/UTs.
POSHAN Tracker: To promote the nutritional status of women and children, a transparent and enabling environment is being created that nurtures health, wellness and immunity. Poshan Tracker application has been built on latest technology for ensuring real-time monitoring of supplementary nutrition and providing information for prompt supervision and management of services. As on 31.10.2022, approximately 9.84 crore beneficiaries have been onboarded. Beneficiaries are being Aadhar seeded to ensure last mile tracking and delivery of services. As on date, close to 85.63% beneficiaries registered on the Poshan Tracker have been successfully ‘Aadhar’ seeded. For the first time, Migration facility for pregnant women and lactating mothers from one AWC to another within and outside a State has been facilitated under the Poshan Tracker. Migration facility from one category to another category of beneficiary is also available.
POSHAN Pakhwada (21st March- 4th April 2022) :
In order to ensure wide-spread engagement to ensure nutrition centric mass movement for Poshan Abhiyaan, Poshan Pakhwada was held from 21st March- 4th April 2022. This focussed around themes including height and weight measurement of beneﬁciary children up to 6 years of age at Anganwadi Centres, activities concentrated around Gender Sensitive Water Management, Anaemia and Traditional Food for healthy mother and child especially in Tribal Areas. This was brought in convergence with Ministry of Jal Shakti (MoJS) and Ministry of Tribal Aﬀairs (MoTA).
As a result of keen participation of all concerned stakeholders, around 3 crore activities under various themes were reported during Poshan Pakhwada 2022. Growth Monitoring activity remained the highest at 10% of activities. This was followed by activities around Breastfeeding, Hygiene, Water & Sanitation, Complementary Feeding, ﬁrst 1000 days, ECCE, Hand Wash & Sanitation, Antenatal Check-up, demonstration on cooking with millet under regional nutrition kit distribution with participation of close to 40 lakh participants.
Rashtriya Poshan Maah (September 2022)
During the entire month of September, 2022, the 5th Rashtriya Poshan Maah was celebrated with Gram Panchayats as the focal point of all the activities. The broader themes for Poshan Maah 2022 were Mahila aur Swasthya, Bachcha aur Shiksha, Gender Sensitive Water Management and Traditional Food for Women & Children. Approximately 43 lakh activities on the theme of Gender Sensitive Water Management and Conservation through workshops, seminars and drives for identifying Anganwadi Centres for installing rainwater harvesting structures were carried out. Over all, more than 15 crore activities were conducted under the various themes, across the country during the Poshan Maah.
The highlights being-
• Strategy for Behaviour Change Communication under ‘Jan Andolan’ to promote a transformative change to address critical issues such as inadequate and inappropriate infant and young child feeding practices, importance of nutrition and care during pregnancy and adolescence and awareness of good health practices to break the inter-generational cycle of malnutrition.
• A National Seminar on Indigenous Toys for Nurturing Early Childhood Development organized in Delhi under the chairperson-ship of Hon’ble Minister of WCD on 30th September 2022 at Dr. Ambedkar International Centre, New Delhi. The workshop / seminar was live streamed on YouTube for the benefit of all ICDS functionaries up to the Anganwadi Workers / Helpers.
• The Poshan Maah culminated with a Poshan Utsav at Kartavyapath, New Delhi from 30th September to 2nd October 2022. The event was conducted in the nature of a celebratory fair on the theme of Poshan -centered on Poshan Parades, healthy-food stalls, health check-up stalls etc.with cultural programmes and AR photo op with Hon’ble PM to attract children and people at large.
Mission Shakti comprises of two sub-schemes ‘Sambal’ and ‘Samarthya’ for safety and security of women and empowerment of women respectively. The existing schemes of One Stop Centres (OSC), Women Helplines (181-WHL) and Beti Bachao Beti Padhao (BBBP) have been made part of Sambal sub- scheme and a new component Nari Adalat has been introduced; while the existing schemes of Pradhan Mantri Matru Vandana Yojana (PMMVY), Ujjwala & Swadhar Greh (Shakti Sadan), Working Women Hostel (Sakhi Niwas), Gender Budgeting and National Crèche Scheme along with a new component of Hubs for empowerment of women at National, State, District levels have been subsumed in ‘Samarthya’. The scheme guidelines for Mission Shakti were issued on 14th July 2022.
- Mantri Matru Vandana Yojana (PMMVY): The Scheme envisages providing cash incentive amounting to Rs. 5,000/- in two instalments directly to the Bank/Post Office Account of Pregnant Women and Lactating Mother (PW& LM) in DBT Mode during pregnancy and lactation. Additionally, the scheme has been expanded to provided maternity benefit amounting to Rs.6000/-cover second child, but only if the second child is a girl child. This is to discourage pre- birth sex selection. It is a measure for women empowerment through wage compensation and promotion of health seeking behaviour. As on 30.11.2022, 2.79 Crore beneficiaries have benefited with a total payment to a tune of Rs. 12,241 Crores under the scheme.
Beti Bachao Beti Padhao: The scheme is being implemented in all districts of the country through multi- sectoral intervention. The Scheme has stirred up collective consciousness towards changing the mind-set of the Nation towards valuing the girl child. This is reflected in the improvement of Sex Ratio at Birth (SRB) by 16 points at National level, from 918 in 2014-15 to 934 in 2021-22(HMIS, of MH&FW).
National Conference on Skilling in Non- Traditional Livelihood for Girls “Betiyan Bane Kushal”
The Ministry in partnership with the Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship (MSDE) and Ministry of Minority Affairs organized an inter-ministerial conference on non-traditional livelihoods (NTLs) for adolescent girls on the occasion of the International Day of the Girl Child on 11th October 2022.The conference emphasized convergence between ministries and departments to ensure that girls build their skills and enter the workforce in a diverse set of professions, including science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM), where girls have historically been under-represented. The event also witnessed signing of MoUs with the Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship (MSDE) and Ministry of Minority Affairs for Skilling of young Girls for their increased, equal and empowered participation in the workforce. Beti Bachao Beti Padhao Operational Manual for guidance of State/Districts for the implementation of the scheme consequent to the changes made as per Mission Shakti guidelines was also launched on the occasion.
One Stop Centres: For women affected by violence and in need of assistance, a range of integrated services are being provided under one roof, including facilitation with police, medical and legal aid and counselling and psycho-social counselling through 730 One Stop Centers or Sakhi Centers across 36 States/UTs. Also, emergency/non-emergency help is provided through toll-free women helpline (181). As on 30.09.2022, assistance has been provided to over 88 lakh women.
Nirbhaya Fund: A meeting of Empowered Committee (EC) of Officers was held on 17.10.2022 in which besides reviewing the status of implementation of 35 earlier approved projects/ schemes, the EC had appraised 3 more projects for funding under Nirbhaya Fund which include (i) Installation of Storage boxes and (ii) Installation of CCTV cameras in 16 women markets (Government of Manipur); (iii) Installation of Vehicle Tracing Devices with SOS Buttons in Buses of TSRTC with monitoring from Central Command Control Centre (State Government of Telangana).
The scheme guidelines for ‘Mission Vatsalya’ were issued on 05th July 2022.
Juvenile Justice Amendment Act: The Juvenile Justice Model Amendment Rules, 2022 have been notified on 1st September 2022 and Adoption Regulations, 2022 have been notified with effect from 23rd September 2022. The DMs have now been made the nodal authority at District levels for all matters relating to child safety, empowerment and safety including issuance of adoption orders. Regional consultations were held virtually for all DMs/ADMs, CWCs and DCPUs of States /UTs from 20-30 September, 2022 on amendments in JJ Act and Rules and Adoption Regulations.
PM CARES Fund for children in distress due to COVID-19- PM CARES for Children Scheme: To support children who have lost both parents, single surviving parent, legal guardian or adoptive parents to Covid-19 pandemic, the scheme for PM Cares for Children was launched on 29th May, 2021 by the Prime Minister, Narendra Modi. A total of 4345 children were found eligible under the scheme.
On 30th May, 2022, the Prime Minister provided benefits and services for children covered under the scheme. He addressed the children and all stakeholders covered under scheme via video conferencing. The event was organized in all 31 State Capitals and 557 Districts, where the children covered under the schemes are residing.
The children along with their guardians/ Care givers and concerned District Magistrate of their respective district joined the event from their District Head Quarters. The Prime Minister initiated real time transfer of scholarship of Rs. 20,000/- to all children studying in class 1 to 12th digitally. During the function, the children were handed over personalized letters from Hon’ble PM; SnehPatra (PM CARES certificate); PM CARES for children scheme passbook; and Ayushman Bharat Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (PM-JAY) card.
Launch of GHAR – GO Home and Re-Unite (Portal for Restoration and Repatriation of Child)
On the occasion of World Children’s Day 20th November 2022 a conference was held in Vigyan Bhavan with all State Govt officials, State Commissions, all the Chairperson and Members of Child Protection Committees from the districts all over the country; District Child Protection Units; Chairperson and Members of Juvenile Justice Board etc. to launch the SoP for reuniting children, who were traced and staying in Child Care Institutions in other District, State or from other countries. The aforesaid SoP called ‘Protocols for Restoration and Repatriation of Children’ was launched by the Union WCD Minister. A web portal to operationalise the protocol that ensures digital tracking and monitoring of children called GHAR (Go Home and Reunite) was also launched on the same day. The programme also included Training Modules for Chairpersons and Members of Child Welfare Committee.
‘Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav’: Children Ideas, Rights & Nutrition:
The Ministry of Women and Child Development celebrated the International Women’s Day-Week from 1st to 8th March 2022 as an ‘Iconic Week’ as a part of ‘Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav’. As part of the week-long celebrations, the Ministry organized various events and social media campaigns covering a variety of themes related to women’s safety and empowerment. The events were organised in partnership with national and international organisations and experts, with active participation of women and children, as well as personnel who work directly for their protection and empowerment.
During the week, WCD Minister Smt. Smriti Irani launched the new motto of NCPCR “भविष्यो रक्षति रक्षति:”. Ministry also launched “Stree Manoraksha Project” in collaboration with NIMHANS Bengaluru for psycho social training for staff and counsellors of One Stop Centres. A two-day National Workshop was organized with State Commissions for Protection of Child Rights (SCPCRs) on contemporary issues pertaining to Child Rights. During the week, on the occasion of International Women’s day (08th March 2022), a campaign named ‘Kanya Shiksha Pravesh Utsav’ was launched in collaboration with M/o Education and UNICEF India to bring back out of school adolescent girls of erstwhile SAG scheme (11-14 years) to formal education and/or skilling system. The Hon’ble President of India conferred Nari Shakti Puraskar-2020 and 2021 to 29 outstanding women achievers in recognition of their exceptional work towards empowerment of women, at a special ceremony held at Rashtrapati Bhawan, New Delhi. The Prime Minister also interacted with the Nari Shakti Puraskar Awardees.
Implementation of CPGRAMS version 7.0- CPGRAMS version 7.0 was implemented and operationalized successfully in MWCD from the month of July, 2022