Eggs or not: Why Madhya Pradesh is debating anganwadi meals again -Iram Siddique

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published Published on Sep 14, 2020   modified Modified on Sep 14, 2020

-The Indian Express

Madhya Pradesh is one of the worst affected states by malnourishment, with the state’s tribal population worst affected. The lockdown has disrupted various government schemes for providing nutrition.

Bhopal: Ahead of bypolls in 27 seats, the BJP government in Madhya Pradesh finds itself walking a tightrope after Women and Child Welfare Minister Imarti Devi recently reiterated her proposal to provide eggs to children in anganwadis and pregnant women to fight malnourishment. Imarti Devi is one of the 22 Congress MLAs who had followed Jyotiraditya Scindia into the BJP, enabling the party to return to power in March this year.

* How old is this proposal?

The proposal to provide eggs to children under the Supplement Nutrition Scheme (SNS) under the Integrated Child Development Scheme (ICDS) was first mooted in 2009. In 2015, it reached the Cabinet for discussion but was dismissed by the BJP government. That year, Chief Minister Chouhan famously said he would never let it happen while he remained CM.

When the Kamal Nath-led Congress government came to power in 2018, the proposal came up again. The proposal, from Imarti Devi, Women and Child Welfare Minister in the Congress government, got stuck due to financial concerns. The BJP opposed it again, with then Leader of Opposition Gopal Bhargav saying that if children are fed eggs from childhood, they might grow up to become cannibals. The proposal was planned for implementation from April 2020, but by then the Congress had lost power.

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The Indian Express, 14 September, 2020,

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