In an effort to fight infant and maternal mortality and malnutrition, Tripura government on Wednesday, June 24, announced a scheme to provide nutrition kits to pregnant and lactating women.
Announcing the initiative, Santana Chakma, state Minister for Social Welfare and Social Education said at least 40,000 women would benefit from the 'Mukhyamantri Matru Pushti Uphaar' scheme.
Each nutrition kit costs Rs 500 and would have food items and grocery supplies, such as peanuts, soya beans, mixed pulses, jaggery and ghee. The state government is estimating to incur an expenditure of Rs 8 crore every year for the initiative.
"Many pregnant women and infants in our state suffer from malnutrition. We need to fight this menace. Under the new scheme, nutrition kits containing food items, such as peanuts, soya beans, mixed pulses, jaggery and ghee, would be distributed to pregnant and lactating women," Chakma said.
The pregnant women would be tested four times at a nearby Primary Health Centers (PHC), following which they will be given a nutrition kit after each test, the Minister said.
Chakma added that the scheme will be in addition to the Pradhan Mantri Matru Bandana Yojana. Earlier, the state had doled out Rs 5,000 each under the Matru Bandana Yojana to 58,996 beneficiaries.
Furthermore, the Minister said that under existing regulations, the children suffering from severe acute malnourishment (SAM) in the state were given four eggs every week. However, the guidelines have been revised and the children will now get six eggs per week, 20g jaggery and 200 ml milk six days a week.
In a bid to fight malnourishment, in February this year, Tripura Chief Minister Biplab Kumar Deb had visited households in the state and gave nutrition kits to pregnant women and lactating mothers.