New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday urged citizens to actively participate in ‘Poshan Maah’ observed in September to eradicate malnutrition as he requested farmers to adopt millets to ensure better health of the citizens.
Addressing the 92nd edition of his radio program “Man Ki Baat”, the Prime Minister said social awareness plays an important role in tackling the challenges of malnutrition.
“The month of September is dedicated to festivals as well as a big campaign related to nutrition.
We celebrate the Poshan Maah every year from the 1st to the 30th of September. Many creative and diverse efforts are being made all over the country against malnutrition. I would urge all of you in the coming nutrition month, to take part in the efforts to eradicate malnutrition,” the Prime Minister said.
Modi gave examples of some states where creative campaigns to eradicate malnutrition have brought good results.
Giving an example of Bongai village of Assam where Project Sampoorna is being run, he said, “Under this Project, the mother of a healthy child from an Anganwadi center meets the mother of a malnourished child every week and discuss all the nutrition-related information.”
“That is, one mother becomes a friend of another mother, helps her, and teaches her. With the help of this project, in this region, in one year, malnutrition has been eradicated among more than 90 per cent children,” PM added.
Modi also talked about the ‘Mera Bachha Abhiyan’ in Datia district of Madhya Pradesh where innovative campaigns are launched in villages to eradicate the problem of malnutrition.
“Friends, I am telling you about so many innovative experiments related to malnutrition, because all of us also have to join this campaign in the coming month,” he said.
The Prime Minister said that better use of technology and also public participation has become an important part of the Nutrition campaign.
From providing mobile devices to millions of Anganwadi workers in the country, a Poshan Tracker has also been launched to monitor the accessibility of Anganwadi services, he said.
He further said that in all the Aspirational Districts and the states of the North East, 14 to 18-year-old daughters have also been brought under the purview of the Poshan Abhiyaan.
“The solution to the malady of malnutrition is not limited just to these steps – in this fight, many other initiatives also play an important role. For example, take the Jal Jeevan Mission…this mission is also going to have a huge impact in making India malnutrition free,” he said.
The Prime Minister said that the United Nations has passed a resolution declaring the year 2023 as the International Year of Millets.
You will also be very happy to know that this proposal of India had been accepted by more than 70 countries, he added.
“Today, around the world, craze for these very coarse grains, millets, is rising. Friends, when I talk about coarse grains, I want to share one of my efforts with you today. For the last some time, when any foreign guests come to India, when Heads of State comes to India, it is my endeavor to get dishes made from the millets of India, that is, our coarse grains in the banquets. And the experience has been that these dignitaries have very much relished them and they also try to collect a lot of information about our coarse grains, about Millets,” he said.
He said that millets, coarse grains, have been a part of India’s agriculture, culture and civilization since ancient times.
“India is the largest producer of millets in the world, hence the responsibility of making this initiative a success also rests on the shoulders of Indians,” he said.
He said that nowadays, the young generation is much focused on healthy living and eating.
“Even if you look at it this way, millets contain plenty of protein, fiber, and minerals. Many people even call it a Superfood. Millets have many benefits, not just one. Along with reducing obesity, they also reduce the risk of diabetes, hypertension and heart-related diseases,” he said, adding that millets are also very beneficial in fighting malnutrition, since they are packed with energy as well as protein.
“It is my request to my farmer brothers and sisters to adopt millets, that is, coarse grains, more and more and benefit from it. It feels good to see that many such start-ups are emerging today, which are working on millets. Some of these are making millet cookies, while some are also making millet pancakes and dosa,” he said. (UNI)