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New scheme to nourish expectant, new mothers

Dharwad, Kolar among 52 dists chosen for the Central project

THE State government will implement Indira Gandhi Matritva Sahayog Yojana, a Centrally-sponsored scheme, from July.

Dharwad and Kolar in Karnataka are among the 52 districts in the country where the conditional maternity benefit scheme will be implemented by the Ministry of Women and Child Development. 

Though the project was scheduled to be launched last year, it was delayed because of procedular hiccups.

“We received the guidelines of the scheme recently and are yet to receive a training module,” said an officer from the Department of Women and Child Development (DWCD). 

The Ministry of Women and Child Development trained officers in both the districts, last month. Moreover, they will undergo another training programme next month.

The State has already received Rs 7.4 crore for the project, which would benefit as many as 80,814 pregnant and lactating mothers (figure estimated last year is bound to change this year) in both districts, said the officers at the DWCD. 

Eligibility

As per the scheme, women above 19 years will benefit only for the first two live births. They will get a cash incentive of Rs 4,000 each in three installments. The aim is to ensure women are not malnourished during pregnancy or after childbirth.

The first installment of Rs 1,500 will be given at the end of second trimester of pregnancy. The second installment will be paid at the end of three months from delivery, provided the childbirth is registered (to ensure institutionalised delivery); the baby has received polio, BCG and DPT-1 and 2 vaccinations and weighs a minimum of twice its weight at birth. The mother should have attended two infant and young child feeding (IYCF) counselling sessions at the anganwadi centres or any other location.

The remaining Rs 1,000 is given when the child is seven months old and is breast-fed for the first six months except when there is a medical problem; the child should have been introduced to complementary food and must have received polio and DPT-3 vaccination, should weigh twice its weight at the third month. The mother should have attended another IYCF counselling.

Open bank accounts
However, the DCWD officials need to open a bank account or a post office account in the beneficiary’s name while the beneficiary is being registered, so that money can be directly transferred to the account. To ensure that more expectant and new mothers avail the benefits of the scheme, anganwadi helpers will get Rs 200 per beneficiary and an additional Rs 100 after the beneficiary receives the sum under the scheme. 

Except the Central or public sector undertaking employees or their wives, women from all financial and social backgrounds are entitled to the benefits of the scheme.

(Published in Deccan Herald on 10th May, 2011)

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