Aiming to expand the Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS) scheme, which is being implemented in 20 districts of Maharashtra, the state cabinet on Monday decided to extend the scheme to cover 15 more districts by starting 236 projects.
An amount of Rs 210.96 crore will be spent on strengthening the ICDS project, of which the state’s share would be Rs 50.52 crore, said an official. In 20 districts, the state is running 553 ICDS projects of which 364 are in rural areas, 85 are in tribal areas and 104 in urban slum areas.
ICDS is a welfare programme under the department of women and child development which provides food, pre-school education and primary healthcare to children under 6 years of age and their lactating mothers.
The total population of children between the age group of 0-6 years in Maharashtra is 1,31,87,087 of which only 86,31,910 are covered under the benefits of the ICDS scheme across the state. This would mean more children and lactating mothers will get the benefit of the scheme.