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

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Whither NRHM?

Your editorial “Evaluation of the Health Mission” (EPW, 23 January) has aptly summarised the Comptroller and Auditor General’s performance audit of the National Rural Health Mission (NRHM) for the year ending 2008. To recall, the NRHM (2005-12) was launched by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in 2005. The NRHM document listed a number of targets at the national level. By way of example, I will refer only to the infant mortality rate (IMR). The IMR target put forward in NRHM was 30 per 1,000 live births. The latest Sample Registration System (SRS) data released by the Registrar General of India indicates that in 2008, among the 19 “bigger states”, there was not a single state except Kerala where the rural IMR was 30 per 1,000 or less.

I give some figures for rural IMR: Madhya Pradesh 75, Orissa 71, Uttar Pradesh 70, Rajasthan 69, Assam 66, Chhattisgarh 59, Gujarat 58, Haryana 58, Andhra Pradesh 58, Bihar 57 and so on. Only in Kerala was the rural IMR as low as 12 per 1,000.

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