India accords high priority to the issue of hunger and malnutrition and is implementing several schemes to improve food situation in the country, Parliament was informed on Monday. “The government of India accords high priority to the issue of hunger and malnutrition and is implementing several schemes to improve food situation in the country,” Minister of State (Independent) for Planning, Rao Inderjit Singh said in a written reply to Rajya Sabha.
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The Minister further said government allocates foodgrains at highly subsidised prices to states and union territories under the National Food Security Act, 2013, covering up to 75 per cent of population in rural and 50 per cent of population in urban areas.
“Government is also implementing other welfare schemes like Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MNREGA), National Health Mission (NHM), Mid Day Meal (MDM) scheme, Integrated Child Development Services Scheme (ICDS), Annapurna Scheme for senior citizens etc,” he added.
The Minister’s statement assumes significance as in Global Hunger Index (GHI) report, Indian ranked 97 out of 118 countries. In the GHI report 2015, India was ranked 80th out of 104 countries.
Replying to a separate query, the Planning Minister said that NITI Aayog has not recommended divestment of CPSUs and its mandate is limited to making recommendations on strategic divestment only.