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Community kitchens

  • IASbaba
  • November 18, 2021
  • 0
UPSC Articles
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Community kitchens

Part of: Prelims and GS-II – Policies and interventions

Context The Supreme Court recently questioned the Union Government’s commitment to run community kitchens across the country to reduce hunger. 

  • It said that the first job of a welfare state was to ensure that people did not starve to death.

Key takeaways 

  • The court observed that the Government’s progress was slow in framing a national policy to run community kitchens in consultation with the State Governments.
  • The SC has given the Government three weeks as a last opportunity to hold a meeting and frame a policy.

Perils of starvation 

  • Starvation deaths continue to impinge upon the right to life and dignity of the social fabric. 
  • A “radical” new measure like community kitchens needed to be set up across the country to feed the poor and the hungry.

No statistics for starvation 

  • While there are statistics available for malnutrition deaths in children and adults in the country, there is no official data available for death of persons owing to starvation. 
  • Food and Agriculture Report 2018 stated that India houses 195.9 million of the 821 million undernourished people in the world which accounts for approximately 24% of the world’s hungry. 
  • Prevalence of undernourishment in India is 14.8%, higher than both the global and Asian average. 

Community kitchens in various states

  • Tamil Nadu’s Amma Unavagam was a huge success by involving peers in self-help groups and employing the poor to serve hygienic food to eradicate the gnawing problem of hunger on the streets. 
  • Other examples include – 
    • Rajasthan’s Annapurna Rasoi
    • Indira Canteen in Karnataka 
    • Aam Aadmi Canteen in Delhi
    • Anna Canteen of Andhra Pradesh
    • Jharkhand Mukhyamantri Dal Bhat in Jharkhand
    • Ahaar Centre in Odisha 

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