The BJP government was cornered in the just-held winter session of the legislative assembly over malnutrition deaths in some areas, including those dominated by the Sahariya tribe.
The Madhya Pradesh government today decided to provide Rs 1,000 per month to each of the families of special backward scheduled tribes (STs) as part of its efforts to eliminate malnutrition among the communities. A decision to this effect was taken by the state cabinet at a meeting here. The BJP government was cornered in the just-held winter session of the legislative assembly over malnutrition deaths in some areas, including those dominated by the Sahariya tribe. Several MLAs, including those from the ruling BJP, had raised the issue in the House. “The cabinet decided that an amount of Rs 1,000 per month would be provided to special backward ST communities, including Sahariya, Baiga and Bharia, to get rid of malnutrition among them. “The decision will benefit 2.5 lakh families,” Gopal Bhargava, Minister for Panchayat, told reporters after the meeting. He said the amount would be deposited in the bank account of the woman head of the family to be used for buying nutritious food items. The cabinet also decided to continue the smartphone distribution scheme for the first year students of government- run colleges till FY2019-20. “The cabinet decided to continue the scheme related to distribution of smartphones to the first year students of government colleges who register 75 per cent attendance,” the minister said. During the winter session, the government had claimed the number of malnourished children in the state had come down by 28.7 per cent since 2005.