Baba’s Explainer – Year End Review-2022: Ministry of Women and Child Development

  • IASbaba
  • December 29, 2022
  • 0
Economics, Governance
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  • GS-1: Society (Women & Children)
  • GS-2: Welfare schemes for vulnerable sections of the population by the Centre and States and the performance of these schemes; mechanisms, laws, institutions and Bodies constituted for the protection and betterment of these vulnerable sections.
  • GS-3: Economy and issues relating to planning, mobilization, of resources, growth, development and employment.

Context: Empowerment and protection of women and children, and ensuring their wholesome development is crucial for sustainable and equitable development of the country.

  • Various measures have been taken by Ministry of Women and Child Development to promote social and economic empowerment of women through
    • cross-cutting policies and programmes
    • mainstreaming gender concerns
    • creating awareness about their rights
    • facilitating institutional and legislative support for women
  • Similarly, safe and secure childhood has also been ensured to our children through cross-cutting policies and programmes, spreading awareness about their rights and facilitating access to learning, nutrition, institutional and legislative support.
What is the organisation of Ministry of women and child development?
  • The Ministry of Women and Child Development was constituted with the goal of addressing gaps in State action for women and children to create gender equitable and child-centred policies and programmes.
  • The Ministry has 6 autonomous organisations.
    • National Institute of Public Cooperation and Child Development (NIPCCD)
    • National Commission for women (NCW)
    • National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR)
    • Central Adoption Resource Agency (CARA)
    • Central Social Welfare Board (CSWB)
    • Rashtriya Mahila Kosh (RMK)

Other statutory bodies that are under the administrative control of the Ministry of Women & Child Development are:

  • The National Commission for Women was set up as statutory body in 1992 under the National Commission for Women Act, 1990 to
    • Review the Constitutional and Legal safeguards for women
    • Recommend remedial legislative measures
    • Facilitate redressal of grievances
    • Advise the Government on all policy matters affecting women
  • National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR)
    • NCPCR was set up in 2007 under the Act of Commissions for Protection of Child Rights (CPCR) Act, 2005.
    • The mandate of NCPCR is to ensure that all laws, policies and programmes are in consonance with child rights perspective as enshrined in the Constitution of India and also the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child.
    • Under the NCPCR, the child is defined as a person in the 0 to 18 years age group.
  • Central Adoption Resource Authority (CARA)
    • It was set up in 1990 but was given statutory status through Juvenile Justice Act, 2015.
    • CARA functions as the nodal body for the adoption of Indian children and is mandated to monitor and regulate in-country adoptions.
    • It is the central authority to deal with inter-country adoptions as per the provisions of the Hague Convention on inter-country Adoption, 1993. India became a signatory to this convention in 2003.
What are the various Schemes of the Ministry?

To ensure better monitoring and efficient implementation, all the schemes being implemented by the Ministry for women and children in the country have been organised into three verticals, viz.

  • (1) Saksham Anganwadi & Poshan 2.0 for Nutrition Support for Children, Adolescent Girls and Pregnant Women & Lactating Mothers; and for Early Childhood Care & Education
  • (2) Mission Shakti for safety, security and empowerment of women
  • (3) Mission Vatsalya for protection and welfare of children
  1. POSHAN Abhiyaan
  • The National Nutrition Mission (NNM) which was later rebranded as the Prime Minister’s Overarching Scheme for Holistic Nutrition (POSHAN Abhiyaan) was set up in 2018.
  • The Poshan Abhiyaan, the Centrally sponsored scheme, is aimed at improving nutritional outcomes among pregnant women, lactating mothers and children
  • Target: Reducing stunting, under-nutrition, anaemia (among young children, women and adolescent girls) and low birth weight by 2%, 2%, 3% and 2% per annum respectively.
  • Implementation status reports of the Abhiyaan are submitted by NITI Aayog every six months.
  • The implementation of POSHAN Abhiyaan is carried out through the Technical Support Unit (TSU) established at NITI Aayog, which will also provide research, policy, and technical support for the program.
  • As the mission is expected to eradicate malnutrition by 2022, it has been taken up by multiple ministries. This helps in expanding the outreach of the mission and thereby facilitating its implementation.
  1. POSHAN Tracker
  • To promote the nutritional status of women and children, a transparent and enabling environment is being created that nurtures health, wellness and immunity.
  • Poshan Tracker application has been built on latest technology for ensuring real-time monitoring of supplementary nutrition and providing information for prompt supervision and management of services.
  • As on 31.10.2022, approximately 9.84 crore beneficiaries have been onboarded. Beneficiaries are being Aadhar seeded to ensure last mile tracking and delivery of services.
  1. Poshan Pakhwada
  • Poshan Pakhwada, a nutrition centric mass movement for Poshan Abhiyaan, emphasised on two broad areas.
  • Identification and celebration of healthy child
  • Integration of modern and traditional practices for healthy India
  • Themes – Height and weight measurement of children up to 6 years of age, Gender sensitive water management, Anaemia, Traditional food for healthy mother and child especially in tribal areas, etc.
  1. Rashtriya Poshan Maah
  • The Rashtriya Poshan Maah is being celebrated during the month of September every year under POSHAN Abhiyaan.
  • The broader themes for Poshan Maah 2022 were Mahila aur Swasthya, Bachcha aur Shiksha, Gender Sensitive Water Management and Traditional Food for Women & Children.
  • Over all, more than 15 crore activities were conducted under the various themes, across the country during the Poshan Maah.
What is Mission Shakti?

Mission Shakti comprises of two sub-schemes ‘Sambal’ and ‘Samarthya’.

  • SAMARTHYA: Purpose is to empower women. It has subsumed the following schemes
    • Pradhan Mantri Matru Vandana Yojana (PMMVY)
    • Ujjwala & Swadhar Greh (Shakti Sadan)
    • Working Women Hostel (Sakhi Niwas)
    • Gender Budgeting
    • National Crèche Scheme
    • Hubs for empowerment of women at National, State, District levels
  • SAMBAL: For safety & Security of women. It has subsumed the following initiatives
    • One Stop Centres (OSC)
    • Women Helplines (181-WHL)
    • Beti Bachao Beti Padhao (BBBP)
    • Nari Adalat

Let us look into some of these initiatives in detail

Mantri Matru Vandana Yojana (PMMVY)

  • It was announced on December 31, 2016
  • The Scheme envisages providing cash incentive amounting to Rs. 5,000/- in two instalments directly to the Bank/Post Office Account of Pregnant Women and Lactating Mother (PW& LM) in DBT Mode during pregnancy and lactation.
  • Additionally, the scheme has been expanded to provided maternity benefit amounting to Rs.6000/-cover second child, but only if the second child is a girl child. This is to discourage pre- birth sex selection.
  • It is a measure for women empowerment through wage compensation and promotion of health seeking behaviour.
  • As on 30.11.2022, 2.79 Crore beneficiaries have benefited with a total payment to a tune of Rs. 12,241 Crores under the scheme.
  • PMMVY is implemented using the platform of Anganwadi Services scheme of Umbrella ICDS under Ministry of Women and Child Development.
  1. Beti Bachao Beti Padhao (BBBP)
  • Launched in 2015 at Panipat in Haryana, it is a tri-ministerial initiative of
    • Ministry of Women and Child Development
    • Ministry of Health & Family Welfare
    • Ministry of Human Resource Development
  • Objectives
    • To prevent gender biased sex selective elimination
    • To ensure survival and protection of the girl child
    • To ensure education and participation of the girl child
    • To increase girl’s participation in the fields of sports
  • Targets
    • Improvement in Sex Ratio at Birth (SRB) by 2 points every year
    • Improvement in the percentage of institutional deliveries or sustained at the rate of 95% or above
    • 1% increase in enrolment at secondary education level and skilling of girls/women per year.
    • To check dropout rate among girls at secondary and higher secondary levels
    • Raising awareness about safe menstrual hygiene management
  • The scheme is being implemented in all districts of the country through multi- sectoral intervention.
  •  The Scheme has stirred up collective consciousness towards changing the mind-set of the Nation towards valuing the girl child. This is reflected in the improvement of Sex Ratio at Birth (SRB) by 16 points at National level, from 918 in 2014-15 to 934 in 2021-22(MH&FW).
  1. Betiyan Bane Kushal
  • It is a National Conference that emphasizes the need for skill development of the girl child in non-traditional methods of livelihood.
  • The conference held on 11th October 2022, was organised to mark the International Day of the Girl Child.
  • The conference emphasized convergence between ministries and departments to ensure that girls build their skills and enter the workforce in a diverse set of professions, including science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM), where girls have historically been under-represented.
  1. Nirbhaya Fund
  • The fund is created in 2013, dedicated for implementation of initiatives aimed at enhancing the safety and security for women in the country.
  • It is a non-lapsable corpus fund, being administered by Department of Economic Affairs, Ministry of Finance.

Schemes under Nirbhaya Fund

One Stop Centre Scheme

  • Also known as “Sakhi Centres”, it aims at establishing centres to facilitate women affected by violence.
  • It provides first aid, medical aid, police assistance, legal aid and counselling support.
  • For women affected by violence and in need of assistance, a range of integrated services are being provided under one roof, including facilitation with police, medical and legal aid and counselling and psycho-social counselling.
  • These services are being done through 730 One Stop Centers or Sakhi Centers across 36 States/UTs.
  • Also, emergency/non-emergency help is provided through toll-free women helpline (181). As on 30.09.2022, assistance has been provided to over 88 lakh women.

Mahila Police Volunteers (MPVs)

  • It will act as a link between police and community and help women in distress.
  • Haryana has become the first state to start the Mahila Police Volunteer scheme.
What is Mission Vatsalya?
  1. Juvenile Justice Amendment Act
  • The Juvenile Justice Model Amendment Rules, 2022 and Adoption Regulations, 2022 have been notified in 2022.
  • The District Magistrates have now been made the nodal authority at district levels for all matters relating to child safety, empowerment and safety including issuance of adoption orders.
  • DMs and ADMs will also monitor the functioning of various agencies under the JJ Act in every district. These include the Child Welfare Committees (CWCs), Juvenile Justice Boards, District Child Protection Units and Special Juvenile Protection Units.
  • Changes have been made to the Child Adoption Resource Information and Guidance System (CARINGS) online platform for adoption.
  • Those children who couldn’t find families within their stipulated referral cycles, are now being offered to prospective parents who are Indian residents, NRIs and OCI card holders irrespective of their seniority.
  • If the child adjusts well with the foster family, it can adopt the child after 2 years of fostering (earlier, 5 years).
  1. PM CARES for Children
  • The PM CARES for Children Scheme was launched in 2021 to support children who have lost both the parents or legal guardian or adoptive parents or surviving parent to COVID-19 pandemic.
  • The objective of the scheme is to
    • Ensure comprehensive care and protection of children in a sustained manner
    • Enable their well being through health insurance
    • Empower them through education and equip them for self-sufficient existence with financial support on reaching 23 years of age
  1. GHAR – GO Home and Re-Unite (Portal for Restoration and Repatriation of Child)
  • National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR), has developed and launched a portal namely GHAR – GO Home and Re-Unite (Portal for Restoration and Repatriation of Child).
  • The GHAR portal has been developed to digitally monitor and track the restoration and repatriation of children according to the protocol.
  • Features
    • Digital tracking and monitoring of children who are in the Juvenile Justice system and have to be repatriated
    • Digital transfer of cases of children to the concerned Juvenile Justice Board/Child Welfare Committee of the State
What were other initiatives undertaken by the Ministry?

Stree Manoraksha Project

  • It was launched in collaboration with NIMHANS, Bengaluru with an aim to improve the mental health of women in India.
  • The project would focus on building on capacity building of One-Stop Center functionaries on the tools and techniques as to how to handle the cases of women approaching the One-Stop Centres.

Nari Shakti Puraskar

  • The President of India conferred Nari Shakti Puraskar-2020 and 2021 to outstanding women achievers in recognition of their exceptional work towards empowerment of women.
  • It is formerly known as Stree Shakti Puraskar (“Woman Power Award”).
  • It is India’s highest civilian award for recognizing the achievements and contributions of women.
  • The awards are given away by the President of India every year on 8 March, International Women’s Day at Rashtrapati Bhavan, New Delhi.
  • The Nari Shakti Puraskar is conferred on individual women, public and private institutions and public departments for their activism and/ or their contributions to the cause of women’s empowerment.
  • The award, instituted in 1999 is given in 6 institutional categories and 2 individual categories.
  • The award carries a cash prize of rupees 1 lakh and a citation.

Main Practice Question: Empowerment and protection of women and children, and ensuring their wholesome development is crucial for sustainable and equitable development of the country. Discuss.

Note: Write answer his question in the comment section.

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