To deal with issues affecting children and women, the Centre has advised state governments to hold special gram sabha meetings, the Lok Sabha was informed on Tuesday.

State governments have been asked to hold special meetings in July or August to take up children issues like mid-day meal, nutrition and anganwadi centres, Panchayati Raj Minister V.Kishore Chandra Deo told Lok Sabha in reply to a written query.

To take up women issues like health, drinking water, sanitation, violence against them and female foeticide, the governments have been asked to convene special Gram Sabha meetings in October or November, he said.

However, it is not mandatory to convene the meetings, Mr. Deo said.

“Mahila gram Sabha meetings have also been recommended because in such meetings issues which affect children are taken up. An advisory on preventing female foeticide has also been circulated to all the states,” he said.