Malnutrition continues to prevail in India. As per the HUNGaMA (Hunger and Malnutrition) Survey, 2011 conducted in 112 rural districts of India, the rates of child malnutrition still continues to be unacceptably high in the country.
One child dies every 15 seconds in India due to neonatal diseases and 20 lakh children die before reaching the age of five. The country sees over four lakh newborn deaths every year within 24 hours of life and over 20 percent of the world's child deaths occur in India, the largest number anywhere in the world. One in three malnourished children of the world live in India.
Out of the 112 districts surveyed, 100 were selected from the bottom of a child development district index developed for UNICEF India in 2009 and are referred to as the 100 Focus Districts in the report. The 100 districts are located in 6 states. The 112 districts were categorized under 3 heads, namely, 100 Focus Districts (100FD), 6 best districts from focus states (6BDF) and 6 best districts from 'best states (6BD). The survey shows a positive change for child nutrition happening in India, inclusive of the 100 Focus Districts. But the rates of child malnutrition are still seen to be very high particularly in the Focus Districts where over 40 per cent of children are underweight and almost 60 per cent are stunted.
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