Congress president Sonia Gandhi on Wednesday launched the Child Health Screening and Early Intervention Services programme at Palghar near here.
Expressing concern over the high child mortality rate in the country, she said, “Children are the future of the nation and their well-being is the prime responsibility of the government.”
Sonia said the new porgramme would cover all the districts in the country. She hoped that the objective of the National Rural Health Mission (NRHM) initiative to benefit 27 crore children would be achieved through effective implementation and monitoring.
The initiative is aimed at improving the overall quality of life of children through early detection of birth defects, diseases and deficiencies, which are among the key reasons for child mortality.
“Under the NRHM Rs 90,000 crore has been provided to the states in the last seven years and the government is trying to ensure that there is no shortage of funds for public health schemes,” she said.
She said 12 crore government schoolchildren were being provided with mid-day meals.
“The UPA Government is going to bring a very important Food Security Act. I think this historic step will help in tackling the problem of malnutrition,” Sonia said.
She claimed that several programmes introduced for children’s welfare since 2004 had been yielding good results.
Sonia also launched ATM cards for the Accredited Social Health Activist (ASHA) workers.