Rice fortification to commence in the state soon: Satish Chandra Choudhary, Addl Secretary, Dept of Food, Public Distribution and Consumer Affairs, Govt of Jharkhand

New Delhi: Mr Satish Chandra Choudhary, Additional Secretary, Dept of Food, Public Distribution and Consumer Affairs, Govt of Jharkhand today said that health is the greatest gift, but to stay healthy has been a challenge in the ongoing pandemic and that, really, is the goal. Healthy lifestyle is the key as being healthy is much easier than recovering from any illness.

Addressing the Aapda Mein Swasthya webinar organized by the FICCI Jharkhand State Council, Mr Choudhary said that the Directive Principle states that it is the duty of the state governments to raise the level of nutrition and standard of living and public health in their respective states. “While the National Food Security Act (NFSA) covers more than 80 crores people and provides them food grains, the Jharkhand Govt is additionally providing around 18 lakh tonnes of meals through the mid-day meal scheme. The state has more than 25,000 PDS shops that cater to 2.61 cr people with food grains- three kilos of rice and two kilos of wheat,” he said.

Mr Choudhary said that despite all the efforts of the state government, the state faces problems of malnourishment. “With an aim to tackle the problems of malnourishment, we (the government) will also be starting rice fortification in Singhbhum. The Jharkhand State Food Security that was launched in December last year, is providing around 15 lakh people with five kilos of rice,” he added.

Mr CB Chakraborty, Sr VP (East & West), Amway India Enterprises stated that COVID-19 has impacted most of the economies of the world in a harsh way. While some economies bounced backed sooner than others, the clear defining factor for this was how healthy the nation’s entrepreneurial ecosystem was. “The Direct Selling industry is valued at INR 14,000 crs. It has provided employment to many people, irrespective of their genders. Women, through direct selling, are playing an active role in the economic development of the nation,” he said.

Mr Chakraborty also stated that the pandemic has brought about major changes in the food habit of the people. Most people, he said, are conscious about the food they eat and that immunity boosting food is in high demand.

Mr Dheeraj Singh, MD, WER1 Lifeproducts Pvt Ltd, said that almost all state governments have taken recommendable steps to curb the pandemic. “While people were mostly concerned with health issues during the first wave, it is Vitamin M- money and income, or the lack thereof, that people are worried about at present. People are now looking for a secondary source of opportunity and income. Direct Selling provides ample job opportunities, thereby making them Atmanirbhar,” he added.

Mr Mukesh Sinha, Co-Founder and CEO Ayushman Health stated the ongoing pandemic has brought health to the centre stage. “Health is not only about having money and infrastructure but also about having a healthy body, a healthy mind and a good immune system,” he said.

Dr Piyush Juneja, Founder of Indianvaidyas.Com, said that the pandemic initiated a thought process of inculcating and imbibing immunity-building supplements along with their daily food in many families. While he said that food supplements should be taken on advice from doctors only, interest and knowledge regarding natural foods, like geloy, tulsi, ashwaganda that have medicinal value, should be created.