General Studies IISchemes

National Nutrition Mission

Ministry of Women and Child Development


National Nutrition Mission data released by ministry of women and child development

About National Nutrition Mission

National Nutrition Mission (NNM), also known as the Poshan Abhiyaan was launched in 2018 (although the programme was being implemented in 2017) by the Government of India with the aim of tackling the malnutrition problem prevalent in India.

  • The chief objective of the mission is to reduce the level of under-nutrition and also enhance the nutritional status of children in the country.
  • The mission is a multi-ministerial initiative and aims at removing malnutrition from the country by 2022.
  • Poshan Abhiyaan is India’s flagship scheme to improve the nutritional outcomes of adolescents, children, pregnant women and lactating mothers.
  • The mission leverages technology and convergence between various modules and departments.
  • The term ‘Poshan’ in the name of the programme stands for ‘Prime Minister’s Overarching Scheme for Holistic Nutrition.
  • The programme has specific targets for reducing stunting, anaemia, under-nutrition and low birth weight.
  • According to ‘Mission 25 by 2020’, the National Nutrition Mission aims to achieve a reduction in stunting from 38.4% to 25% by 2022.
  • The mission also encompasses mapping of various other schemes related to malnutrition and enabling synergies through ICT-based real-time monitoring system, robust convergence between the schemes, incentivising states and UTs for meeting the set targets, and optimising Anganwadi centres’ functioning, apart from conducting social audits.
    • These other schemes include the Pradhan Mantri Matru Vandana Yojana (PMMVY), Janani Suraksha Yojana, Scheme for Adolescent Girls (SAG), Swachh Bharat Abhiyaan, PDS, National Health Mission, etc.
    • For Anganwadi centres, the mission envisages the following:
      •  Giving incentives to Anganwadi Workers (AWWs) for using IT-based tools.
      • Elimination of registers used by AWWs.
      • Measuring the height of children at Anganwadi centres.
  • Another component of the mission is the gradual scaling up of the interventions under the World Bank assisted Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS) Systems.
  • The implementing agency is the Ministry of Women and Child Development, GOI. 
  • The NITI Aayog also plays a pivotal role in the mission. The National Council on India’s Nutritional Challenges, which has been set up under the Poshan Abhiyaan, has the Vice Chairperson of NITI Aayog as its Chairperson.
    • The council is also called the National Council on Nutrition or NCN.
    • The NCN offers policy directions to address nutritional challenges and review programmes for the same.
    • It is a national-level coordination and convergence body on nutrition.

Data as follows:

POSHAN Abhiyaan launched on 8th March, 2018 addresses malnutrition issues across the nation through components like ICT Application, Convergence, Community Mobilization, Behavioural Change & Jan Andolan, Capacity Building, Incentives and Awards and Innovations. Activities undertaken in POSHAN Abhiyaan in last three years are as follows:

  • Under the Abhiyaan, a robust ICT platform., the Poshan Tracker has been developed and rolled out across 12.27 lakh Anganwadis covering approximately 9.84 crore beneficiaries.
  • The Abhiyaan empowers Anganwadi workers and Lady Supervisors by providing them with smartphones. As of now the number of Smartphones and GMDs (comprising Stadiometer, Infantometer, Weighing Scale for Infant and Mother & Child) made available to States/UTs are 11.03 lakh and 11.94 lakh respectively.
  • Under Convergence, key Ministries/Departments are working in coordination with Ministry of Women and Child Development for addressing issues concerning malnutrition.
  • Community Mobilization, Behavioural Change & Jan Andolan component helped reach out to the masses through the nation’s biggest nutrition-centric annual Jan Andolans, in the form of Poshan Maahs (September) and Poshan Pakhwadas (March). Since the launch of Poshan Abhiyaan, 4 Poshan Maah and 3 Poshan Pakhwada have been conducted. About 3.70 crore Community Based Events (CBEs) have also been conducted.
  • Under Capacity Building component approx., 10.22 lakh frontline functionaries have been successfully trained. Additionally, approx. 6.61 lakh field functionaries have undergone training through digital platform. Till date, 8.3 lakh Anganwadi Workers/ Anganwadi Helpers have been trained in the ICT application.
  • AWWs and AWHs are incentivized @Rs 500 and Rs 250 per month respectively on achieving targets under Home Visits and Weighing and Measuring of Children.
  • Under Innovations, 26 States/UTs have taken up more than 50 innovative initiatives so far since the launch of POSHAN Abhiyaan.

Under POSHAN Abhiyaan, the budgetary allocation is for programme components like ICT Application, Convergence, Community Mobilization, Behavioural Change & Jan Andolan, Capacity Building, Incentives and Awards, and Innovations. 

Specific Targets of NNM

The National Nutrition Mission aims at achieving the following:

  1. Reduce stunting by 2% annually.
  2. Reduce under-nutrition by 2% annually.
  3. Reduce anaemia by 3% annually.
  4. Reduce low birth weight by 2% annually.


  1. Implementation: The intent of the policy is clear, but the implementation could be a challenge. Malnutrition is a complex and multi-dimensional issue and thus need holistic approach.
  2. Lack of coordination: Various ministries and departments related to healthcare often operate in isolation.
  3. Under-utilisation of funds: The scheme also suffers from under-utilisation of allocated funds (only 16% of allocated resources for 2018-19), just like many other government programmes.
  4. Lack of data) Lack of real-time data monitoring, sustainability and accountability may impact the National Nutrition Mission (NNM), Thus there is a need to strengthen monitoring and delivery systems.
  5. Human Resources: NNM requires a huge human resource input. In a low-and-middle-income-country with challenges around power supply, literacy, handling technology sensitively and sensibly may require a long period of hand-holding and capacity building.

Way forward:

  1. Focus on mothers: The first and the most important step for reducing malnutrition in India is providing sufficient nutrition to pregnant and lactating mothers. The child then automatically is at much less risk of being malnourished.
  2. Sate action: States need to extending a wide range of essential services and facilities, from healthcare and clean water to social security and basic infrastructure.
  3. Data Collection: Data should be collected comprehensively. Motivating people to report and collect data ethically also have to be emphasised.

The vision to ensure attainment of malnutrition free India by 2022 continues through more innovations and pilot programs and has reached the grass root level households. Poshan Abhiyaan has received global recognition for its effort in eradicating malnutrition. Yet there is far to go in ending malnutrition issue in India.

Source: PIB

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