The second “national convention on children's right to food” concluded here on Sunday with a call to link anti-malnutrition strategies to inflationary indices.

The three-day convention in which about 1,000 delegates from 21 States participated, adopted a 25-point “charter” on combating malnutrition.

Shanta Sinha, chairperson of the National Commission for the Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR), stressed on focussing on the disadvantaged sections in the fight against malnutrition.

Blaming the Central and State governments for rampant malnutrition across the country, Dr. Sinha called for a decentralised approach to counter malnutrition. “The women and child development department and the health department keep blaming each other for the rampant malnutrition in the State. There should be better coordination between the two and the ultimate responsibility to answer for child deaths should be fixed with either on eof them,” Vibhanshu Joshi, chairperson of the Madhya Pradesh commission for the protection of child rights said.

Right to food activists Biraj Patnaik and Sachin Jain and National Campaign for People's Right to Information (NCPRI) activist Nikhil De participated along with MLAs from Madhya Pradesh and officials from the State's women and child development department.

The 25-point charter calls for universalisation and diversification of the Public Distribution System under the proposed national Right to Food Act, universalisation of the Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS) scheme, ensuring job security and social security for Anganwadi workers, promoting decentralised/localised production of nutrition supplements instead of ready-to-eat packaged material, focussing on the health of adolescent girls and inclusion of micronutrients in ICDS meal among others.

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