ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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FOCUS Report: Investing in Children

There is no finer investment for any community than putting milk into babies said Winston Churchill. The Focus on Children Under Six (FOCUS) report put together by the Citizens’ Initiative for the Rights of Children Under Six points out that children are an investment and devoting resources to child nutrition and health is among the most economically justified uses of public resources.

The report, based on surveys of 12 villages each in the six states of Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Himachal Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Chhattisgarh and Tamil Nadu, is the first really independent assessment of the Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS). The most significant point it makes is that for a successful ICDS, policy-makers are important but not as much as the wider public. Government policy is an outcome of democratic politics and though “Indian democracy has shown severe limitations in its ability to do justice to the rights of children…this situation is not immutable, and all of us can play a part in changing it.”

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