Aadhar made mandatory for nutrition benefit scheme, leaves activists fuming

In order to curb the rising women and infant mortality rates in the country, the union government had launched ‘Sabala’ and ‘Amrit Aahar’ yojana. The aim of the scheme is to provide nutritious food for the expectant mother, lactating mothers, and adolescent girls. But, in order to be a beneficiary under these schemes. The government has made it compulsory to have an Aadhar card to gain access to the benefit schemes

Aadhar made mandatory for nutrition benefit scheme, leaves activists fuming

Health activists said that with the Aadhar linking mandatory, many women will not get the benefit of the government scheme.

Malnutrition in the tribal and rural areas, is the biggest challenge, the government machinery facing. And to reduce the rising mother and child mortality rates is a herculean task before the state machinery. To help the pregnant and lactating mothers, the government launched ‘Amrit Aahar Yojana.’ And to help the adolescents girls get nutritious food ‘Sabala Yojana’ was pressed into action.

But on March 31, Women and Child Welfare secretary, Maharashtra, Vinita Ved Singhal, sent a letter to all concern officials.

The letter states:

  • Under the ‘Sabala Yojana,’ benefits will be given to those who have Aadhar card linked to the scheme.
  • The union government has made it clear that benefits will be given only to those who have Aadhar card.
  • Under these schemes, no benefit will be given without linking the Aadhar card to the scheme.
  • All concerned officials will look into the matter and send a report to this office.

Aadhar made mandatory for nutrition benefit scheme, leaves activists fuming

But, the government’s decision to make Aadhar mandatory has not gone down well with health activists. Vinod Shende, member of Jan Aarogya Samiti, an NGO which works for the patient’s rights says, “To get nutritious benefits the government has made Aadhar card compulsory. This decision will have its own repercussions. The number of families in rural areas, often shift their base in search for food and work. These families are very poor. If Aadhar is made mandatory they will be left out.”

While speaking to My Medical Mantra, Chitra Wagh, a NCP leader said, “If at all the government wants to reduce the rates of mother and child mortality in the country, they should not put up a condition like this. Making Aadhar mandatory to seek health benefits is wrong. 25,000 kids and infants die in Maharashtra due to malnutrition. Still, the government wants to make Aadhar compulsory to get the benefits.”