18L anganwadi kids yet to receive unisex uniform in Tamil Nadu

The department commenced the distribution of uniforms to anganwadi children in some districts on a pilot basis in 2014
Image used for representational purposes only
Image used for representational purposes only(File photo | Express)

CHENNAI: Though it has been nearly a month since anganwadi centres in the state reopened, over 18 lakh children in these centres are yet to be given new uniforms. With the Social Welfare Department floating tenders in this regard only recently, the uniforms in all likelihood will take another three months to reach the children.

The department commenced the distribution of uniforms to anganwadi children in some districts on a pilot basis in 2014. Last year, it decided to distribute unisex uniforms to children across the state. The cost of unisex readymade colour uniforms was fixed at Rs 150 per set (each child will be provided two sets).

Anganwadi workers said the uniform quality had improved after they were made unisex. “The parents of wards, who are mostly from poor economic backgrounds, were also happy that this uniform resembled that of private pre-schools,” said an anganwadi worker from Chennai.

This year, the department decided to provide uniforms to 18.6 lakh children at a total cost of Rs 27 crore. However, the delay in the distribution has raised eyebrows. “Even last year, the uniforms were distributed only after August,” said T Daisy, General Secretary of Tamil Nadu Anganwadi Workers and Assistants Association. Officials from Integrated Child Development Services and Social Welfare Department were not available for comments.

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