Poshan Abhiyan | 26 Sep 2022

For Prelims: Anganwadi Centres, Poshan Vatikas,POSHAN Abhiyaan (National Nutrition Mission), POSHAN 2.0, Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS)

For Mains: Significance of Poshan Abhiyan

Why in News?

Recently, under various interventions of the Ministry of Women and Child Development jointly (MWCD) with Ministry of Ayush, close to 4.37 lakh Anganwadi Centres have set up Poshan Vatikas.

  • Under ongoing Poshan Maah 2022, activities for setting-up Poshan Vatikas with backyard poultry / fishery units is being carried out in a big way across the country.
  • Additionally, so far, 1.10 lakh medicinal saplings have also been planted across some of the selected districts of 6 States.

What do we Know about Poshan Maah?

  • The Rashtriya Poshan Maah is being celebrated during the month of September every year under POSHAN Abhiyaan.
  • It includes a month-long activity focused on antenatal care, optimal breastfeeding, Anemia, growth monitoring, girls' education, diet, right age of marriage, hygiene and sanitation and eating healthy (Food Fortification).
  • The activities focus on Social and Behavioural Change Communication (SBCC) and are based on Jan Andolan Guidelines.
    • SBCC is the strategic use of communication approaches to promote changes in knowledge, attitudes, norms, beliefs and behaviours.

What do we know about Poshan Vatika?

  • About:
    • Poshan Vatika means that small piece of land where the people of the house grow vegetables to make sure that all in the family specially children and women should not become victim of mal-nutrition.
  • Objective:
    • Its main objective is to ensure supply of nutrition through organically home-grown vegetables and fruits simultaneously ensuring that the soil must also remain healthy.
  • Implementation:
    • Plantation drives for Poshan Vatikas would be taken up by all the stakeholders in the space available at anganwadis, school premises and gram panchayats.

What do we Know about Poshan Abhiyan?

  • About
    • POSHAN Abhiyaan (National Nutrition Mission) was launched by the government on March 8, 2018.
  • Aim:
    • The Abhiyaan targets to reduce stunting, undernutrition, anemia (among young children, women and adolescent girls) and reduce low birth weight by 2%, 2%, 3% and 2% per annum respectively.
    • The target of the mission is to bring down stunting among children in the age group 0-6 years from 38.4% to 25% by 2022.
    • POSHAN Abhiyaan aims to ensure service delivery and interventions by use of technology, behavioural change through convergence and lays-down specific targets to be achieved across different monitoring parameters.
    • Under the Abhiyaan, Swasth Bharat Preraks will be deployed one in each district for coordinating with district officials and enabling fast and efficient execution of the Abhiyaan across the country. Swasth Bharat Preraks would function as catalyst for fast tracking the implementation of the Abhiyaan.
  • POSHAN 2.0:
    • About:
      • The government has amalgamated various programmes with similar objectives such as Supplementary Nutrition Programme and POSHAN Abhiyaan under one umbrella–Mission POSHAN 2.0—for creating synergies in operations and adopting an integrated approach in the nutrition services mechanism.
    • Components:
      • Convergence: The Abhiyaan is to ensure convergence of all nutrition related schemes of MWCD on the target population. The Abhiyaan will ensure convergence of various programmes.
      • ICDS-CAS: Software based tracking of nutritional status will be done.
      • Behavioral change: The Abhiyaan will be run as a Jan Andolan where mass involvement of people is desired. A community-based event will happen once a month to create awareness and address issues.
      • Incentives: Front line workers will be given incentives for performance.
      • Training and Capacity Building: Incremental Learning Approach will be adopted to teach 21 thematic modules. The training will be given by Master Trainers to front line workers.
      • Grievance Redressal: A call centre will be set up for ease of access to solutions to any issues faced.

What was the Need for Poshan Abhiyan?

  • Malnutrition and Anaemia among Children:
    • According to the National Family Health Survey (NFHS)-5, India has unacceptably high levels of stunting, despite marginal improvement over the years.
    • In 2019-21, 35.5% of children below five years were stunted and 32.1% were underweight.
  • Global Nutrition Report-2021:
    • According to the Global Nutrition Report (GNR, 2021), India has made no progress on anaemia and childhood wasting.
      • Over 17% of Indian children under 5 years of age are affected due to childhood wasting.
      • The data in NFHS 2019-21 shows the highest spike in anaemia was reported among children aged 6-59 months from 67.1% (NFHS-5) from 58.6% (NFHS-4, 2015-16).
    • Human Capital Index (2020):
      • India ranks 116 out of 180 countries on the human capital index.
        • Human capital consists of the knowledge, skills, and health that people accumulate over their lives, enabling them to realize their potential as productive members of society.

What are the other Related Initiatives?

Way Forward

  • Proactive measures are needed to address the longstanding issues of malnutrition and food insecurity in the country.
  • The imperative is to formulate structured, time-bound and location-specific strategies with due consideration to the effects of socioeconomic factors and impact of the pandemic.
  • It is also crucial to create a comprehensive approach that will address the different sectors and dimensions of nutrition.

UPSC Civil Services Examination Previous Year Question (PYQ)


Q. Which of the following are the objectives of ‘National Nutrition Mission’? (2017)

  1. To create awareness relating to malnutrition among pregnant women and lactating mothers.
  2. To reduce the incidence of anaemia among young children, adolescent girls and women.
  3. To promote the consumption of millets, coarse cereals and unpolished rice.
  4. To promote the consumption of poultry eggs.

Select the correct answer using the code given below:

(a) 1 and 2 only
(b) 1, 2 and 3 only 
(c) 1, 2 and 4 only
(d) 3 and 4 only

Ans: (a)


  • National Nutrition Mission (POSHAN Abhiyaan) is a flagship programme of the Ministry of Women and Child Development, GoI, which ensures convergence with various programmes like Anganwadi services, National Health Mission, Pradhan Mantri Matru Vandana Yojana, Swachh-Bharat Mission, etc.
  • The goals of National Nutrition Mission (NNM) are to achieve improvement in nutritional status of children from 0-6 years, adolescent girls, pregnant women and lactating mothers in a time bound manner during the next three years beginning 2017- 18. Hence, 1 is correct.
  • NNM targets to reduce stunting, under-nutrition, anaemia (among young children, women and adolescent girls) and reduce low birth weight of babies. Hence, 2 is correct.
  • There is no such provision relating to consumption of millets, unpolished rice, coarse cereals and eggs under NNM. Hence, 3 and 4 are not correct. Therefore, option (a) is the correct answer.

Source: PIB