Bangla Govt setting examples in nutritional intervention

National Nutrition Week begins from today. The Trinamool Congress-run Bangla Government has introduced several initiatives to improve the health of children through large-scale nutritional intervention programmes and improving healthcare facilities. It is an ongoing process, with Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee leading the efforts, being the Health Minister as well. As a result of these efforts, both infant mortality rate and maternal mortality rate have come down considerably. Eradication of under-nutrition and malnutrition has also been made one of the primary aims of the internationally-recognised Kanyashree Scheme.


Largest child nutrition intervention programme: Bangla has the largest child nutrition intervention under the ICDS programme, reaching out to 76 lakh children below 6 years and 14 lakh pregnant and lactating women spread across 23 districts. Energy-dense protein-rich ready-to-eat food has been introduced for all severely malnourished children. Hot cooked meals are provided to all children and pregnant and lactating mothers.

Special food provisions under Khadya Sathi: As part of the Khadya Sathi Scheme, the Food and Supplies Department has introduced a special coupon for all mothers and babies admitted in Nutrition Rehabilitation Centres, and babies who have been admitted because they are malnourished. Each baby and mother together get 5kg of rice, 2.5kg of fortified atta, 1kg masoor dal and 1kg of Bengal gram against this coupon.

IMR and MMR going down, institutional delivery going up: Both infant mortality rate (IMR) and maternal mortality rates (MMR) across the State have gone down considerably in the past seven-and-half-years. The MMR has reduced from 113 per 1 lakh mothers in 2011 to 101 in 2018, which is much lower than the national average of 130. The IMR has reduced to 25 per 1,000 live births, which is also much lower than the national average of 34. What is also significant is that the State Government has increased institutional delivery from 65 per cent in 2010 to 97.5 per cent in 2018-19.

Mother and Child Hubs: The Health Department has also initiated the process to setting up 14 Mother and Child Hubs (MCH) at different facilities across the State for ensuring qualitative and quantitative improvement in maternal and child services at various hospitals. Out of the 14, nine are operational.

Upgrading of healthcare facilities: The Government has taken up a comprehensive scheme of upgrading maternal, newborn and paediatric services at 68 tertiary and secondary healthcare facilities (that conduct more than 3,000 deliveries in a year) with the aim of providing better treatment to expectant mothers and infants.

Kanyashree: Two of the internationally-recognised Kanyashree Scheme’s six primary objectives deal with nutrition: improving the IMR and MMR by delaying the age of marriage and consequently increasing the age of first birth, and eradicating under-nutrition and malnutrition of female children.

Compete on work, not on divisiveness, fighting or jealousy: Mamata Banerjee

Today Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee addressed an audience of MSME investors at Nabanna Sabhaghar.

Highlights of her speech:

Several industrial clusters and industrial parks dedicated to micro, small and medium enterprises (MSME) were inaugurated today. The total acreage is 1,633 acres. Rs 13,000 crore has been allocated for developing them. Two lakh people would get employment.

A few weeks back I had inaugurated an expanded leather complex at Bantala; it is now the world’s second largest leather complex.

I have renamed the leather complex as Karmadiganta, where leather goods manufacturers from Kanpur, who had to endure huge losses due to closure of their business units, are setting up base.

Once upon a time Howrah was famous as an industrial hub; similarly Bardhaman was famous for sweets and Chandannagar for its lighting technicians. We are bringing those glory days back.

It is unfortunate that the media is intent on highlighting only the negative aspects of Bangla; there are so many positives to talk about. It is a matter of great pride that many who had once left our State are now coming back to work here.

We have a deep responsibility towards the citizens of this State. We want big industries to be set up here. A lot of companies are closing down across the country. There is no use giving just big talk and creating a mirage of stability through controlling the media. Economic independence is what really matters.

In such a state of affairs as it exists now, it is important to concentrate on jobs and agriculture.

Women, youth, students are our strengths, they show us the way.

For creating employment for the rural people, it is crucial to set up a strong MSME base.

Traditional industrial bases like Howrah, Haldia and others need to be developed more through the setting up of manufacturing units and more people need to come forward for this.

For ease of doing business, the Bangla Government has set up a single-window scheme for approval of proposals for setting industries. We will appoint a nodal officer to make the system more smooth, for which a committee has been set up.

We have streamlines the work culture of the State. Earlier 70 to 80 person-days used to be wasted every year, now that has stopped.

The Centre is trying to privatise 45 PSUs across the country, putting in danger the jobs of 8 lakh people.

The percentage of employment is at a 45-year high now.

We want people to work and be happy.

Bangla is a safe place for industry; that why companies like Wipro and Microsoft are setting up bases here.

A total of 26 helipads and greenfield airports are being constructed.

In MSME, skill training, GDP growth and girls’ empowerment (Kanyashree) Bangla is number one.

About 60 lakh girls are getting benefits through the Kanyashree Scheme, from school right till the postgraduate stage.

About 9 lakh people are benefitting from the Khadya Sathi Scheme and 7.5 crore through Swasthya Sathi.

Bangla has received the Krishi Karman Award six times.

Here medicine at government hospitals is available at very cheap prices, affordable for everybody, at discounts of up to 70 per cent.

Compete on work, not on divisiveness, fighting or jealousy: Mamata Banerjee

Everybody stay happy.

I want Kanyashrees to rise up in life with determination, dedication and devotion: Mamata Banerjee

August 14 is celebrated by the Bangla Government as Kanyashree Dibas, dedicated to the flagship Kanyashree Prakalpa or Kanyashree Scheme. This much-feted scheme was conceived by Chief Minister Banerjee and it was she who inaugurated it on October 1, 2013.

The scheme has benefitted over 60 lakh girls in schools, colleges and universities across the State by spending over 7000 crores of rupees.

Kanyashree Prakalpa has six primary objectives: Incentivising education through scholarships; incentivising education through scholarships; discouraging early marriage of girls;reducing the incidence of dropping out of schools; improving infant mortality rate and maternal mortality rate by delaying the age of marriage and consequently increasing the age of first birth; eradicating under-nutrition and malnutrition of female children; and, preventing trafficking and exploitation.

The scheme also pays for the vocational training of girls so that after passing out of schools, they can start earning by being self-employed.

On this occasion, Mamata Banerjee addressed students at a grand programme. She also awarded girls who had achieved in various fields, including education, sports and others.

Highlights of the chief minister’s speech:

My greetings to all on the occasion of Kanyashree Dibas. Today, the Kanyashree Scheme steps into its sixth year. We celebrate Kanyashree Dibas on August 14, the day we dedicate to girls.

We got the United Nations Public Service Prize for Kanyashree.

Girls are now spread across the globe, excelling in different fields. I harbour a lot of hopes for my Kanyashree girls too to excel. I want them to rise up in life with determination, dedication and devotion, using their education, culture and humanism as a springboard.

We will set up Kanyashree colleges in different districts.

School, college and even university girls now get Kanyashree scholarships.

State Government also provides Swami Vivekananda Scholarships for university education.

As students from Bangla, you have to learn other languages too but you should not forget your mother tongue. Bengali is our pride. There is no language in the world as sweet as Bengali.

I want Kanyashree girls to be feted for their achievements in all corners of the globe. I want them to be able to hold up their heads proudly and say, “I am a Kanyashree”.

The Utkarsh Bangla Scheme has also been awarded by the United Nations.

Kanyashree to join hands with Utkarsh Bangla

Two internationally-recognised schemes of the Bangla Government are coming together for a better world. Class XI and XII students enlisted under the Kanyashree Scheme are now going to get career-centric technical education under the aegis of Utkarsh Bangla.

Incidentally, among other prestigious awards, both have won the WSIS Prize, given by ITU, an agency of the United Nations. While the Kanyashree Scheme won it in 2016, the Utkarsh Bangla Scheme won it in 2019.

The students will also get a stipend of Rs 50 per day during the course of the training. This would be added to the regular yearly stipend given under Kanyashree. It may be mentioned here that Kanyashree Clubs have also been involved in Utkarsh Bangla.

Under Utkarsh Bangla, short-term courses of duration between 80 and 600 hours are offered by government as well as private institutions, in fields like telecom, tailoring, beauty treatment, computer education, jewellery-making and many more.

Like the rest of the Utkarsh Bangla Scheme, the training of Kanyashree girls will also be overseen by the Paschimbanga Society for Skill Development, which comes under the Technical Education, Training and Skill Development Department.


Mamata Banerjee to address students on the occasion of Kanyashree Dibas

This day is celebrated by the Bangla Government as Kanyashree Dibas, dedicated to the flagship Kanyashree Prakalpa or Kanyashree Scheme. This much-feted scheme was conceived by Chief Minister Banerjee and it was she who inaugurated it on October 1, 2013.

The scheme has benefitted about 58 lakh girls till now in over 17,000 institutions, including schools, colleges and universities across the State.

Kanyashree Prakalpa has six primary objectives: Incentivising education through scholarships; discouraging early marriage of girls; incentivising education through scholarships; reducing the incidence of dropping out of schools; improving infant mortality rate and maternal mortality rate by delaying the age of marriage and consequently increasing the age of first birth; eradicating under-nutrition and malnutrition of female children; and, preventing trafficking and exploitation.

The scheme also pays for the vocational training of girls so that after passing out of schools, they can start earning, if not interested in further education.

On this occasion, Mamata Banerjee will address students at a grand programme. She will also award girls who have achieved in various fields, like education, sports and social activity.

10 facts about Kanyashree Prakalpa

August 14 is celebrated by the State Government as Kanyashree Dibas, to mark the celebration of the flagship scheme, Kanyashree Prakalpa. The scheme is run by the Women and Child Development Department.

On this occasion, let us look at 10 facts about this internationally-recognised scheme.

1. Beneficiaries: About 58 lakh adolescent girls as well as college and university-going girls, covering over 17,400 institutions.

2. Scholarship amounts: Rs 1,000 per annum from ages 13 to 18 (K1 level); Rs 25,000 one-time grant after turning 18 and before turning 19 (K2 level), provided she has been a beneficiary of K1 stage; for postgraduate female students, Rs 2,500 per month in science stream and Rs 2,000 per month in arts stream (K3 level)

3. Huge allocation of funds: Total budget since launch is over Rs 7,000 crore

4. Dropout reduced significantly: School dropout rate has reduced significantly, proved by an increase by 73% (from 5.62 lakh to 9.74 lakh) in the admission of girl students

5. Kanyashree Clubs: Kanyashree Clubs formed and strengthened across the State since 2016, empowering girls through self-defence training, life skills sessions, sports training, organising awareness campaigns on child marriage, etc., making them confident to voice their opinions and becoming change agents in their communities

6. Kanyashree Dishari: Special educational and awareness (health, etc.) exposure visits of Kanyashree beneficiaries, organised in North 24 Parganas and Howrah districts

7. Swapner Bhor: K2-level Kanyashree beneficiaries, that is, those who have crossed the age of 18 years, given technical training to make them employable

8. Kanyashree Swabalambi: As part of this project, training provided in tailoring, nursing, handicrafts, etc.; buildings in each block headquarters named ‘Kanyashree’ coming up, which have books, computers with high-speed internet and training centres for vocational skills

9. International awards: United Nations Public Service Award in 2017 and the WSIS Prize 2016 (given by the ITU, an agency of the United Nations) in the ‘Champion in e-Governance’ category; finalist at the GEM-TECH Awards 2016, organised by ITU and UN Women

10. National awards: National e-Governance Award for FY 2014-15, Skoch Order of Merit Award 2015 in the ‘Smart Governance’ category, CSI-Nihilent Award for e-governance for FY 2014-15


Foundation stone of State’s first Hindi University laid

Bangla Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee today laid the foundation stone of the first Hindi University in the State. The university will come up at Arupara in Howrah district.

The CM also inaugurated and laid the foundation stones for several other projects on the occasion. She also distributed benefits of various schemes to people from the stage.

Highlights of her speech:

Who could have thought the State Secretariat would be relocated to Howrah? We did it.

Swasthya Bhavan will be shifted to a 3 acre plot behind Nabanna soon. The work for DPR has begun.

Who could have thought, a helipad would come at Dumurjola? We have already set up 30 new helipads across the State.

New airports have come up at Malda, Balurghat, Andal and Cooch Behar. One more is coming up at Purulia.

Whenever someone from outside visits Kolkata, they say the city has progressed. This is poriborton. But a few jealous people refuse to acknowledge the change that has happened in the State.

Bangla’s Kanyashree scheme won the first prize from UN. Bangla is No. 1 in the world.

There is 50% reservation for women in local bodies. Women get maternity leave for 731 days.

We have done away with income ceiling for Kanyashree scheme. Everyone is eligible for the scholarship now.

We have distributed Sabooj Sathi cycles. 72 lakh SC/ST students have received Sikshashree scholarships. 2.12 crore minority students have also received scholarships, the highest in India.

58 lakh OBC students are now pursuing higher education. We have started Swami Vivekananda Merit scholarships for general caste students.

Before we came to power in 2011, there were only 12 universities in Bangla. We have set up 28 new universities in the last seven and half years. We laid the foundation for one more today. 10 more universities are in the pipeline.

We have done away with khajna tax and mutation fees on agricultural land.

We have waived off mutation fees on inherited land. You need not to go gazetted officers for attestations anymore. Our government has started self-attestations.

State Govt pays the full premium for crop insurance. The State Govt is funding the scheme entirely, not the Centre.

72 lakh farmer families will benefit from the Krishak Bandhu scheme.

We give financial assistance of Rs 5000 to pregnant women. We send ‘Matri Jaan’ to ferry mothers to hospitals.

Not only Bangla, people from Bihar, Jharkhand, Odisha also come to our State for free healthcare.

We have brought 7.5 crore people under Swasthya Sathi scheme. We are not a part of Ayushmaan Bharat scheme. It is hogwash.

We have issued the Swasthya Sathi cards in the name of women, recognising them as the head of the family. Even her parents will be eligible for insurance with that card.

Today we have laid the foundation stone for drinking water supply projects worth Rs 1488 crore. Another project worth Rs 1100 crore will be initiated tomorrow at Bankura.

Earlier people used to complain about load shedding. Those days are now history.

Narendra Modi goes for even inaugurating toilets. Why does he seek so much publicity? He only believes in publicity, no action.

When demonetisation was announced, I was the first to call it a disaster. More than 2 crore people have lost their jobs since then.

More than 12,000 farmers have committed suicide in the country. Charity begins at home. Bengal is No. 1 in generating employment under MGNREGA.

We are No. 1 in skill development training through Utkarsh Bangla.

Our Utkarsh Bangla scheme has been ranked among the top 5 among 1,062 schemes from across the world.

Sabooj Sathi has been ranked among the top 5 among 1142 schemes from across the world.

We have reduced unemployment by 40%. It is on record in Parliament.

Modi babu knows only how to manipulate data.

Five years are gone. This government’s expiry date is over. Will taking expired medicines treat the ailment?

Elections are around the corner. Hence, they are brandishing arms and weapons. They are indulging in opportunistic politics over the blood of the jawans.

We are with the armed forces. We are with the martyrs. We are in favour of peace, not riots. We stand by the people of this country. We are against Modi. We are against BJP.

If you speak against them, you are branded as Pakistanis. We are all Pakistani, and they are the only nationalists?

They are searching about religion on Google everyday. My religion is humanity.

Abraham Lincoln had said “You can fool all the people some of the time, and some of the people all the time, but you cannot fool all the people all the time”

They are creating divisions within the society. They are pitting people against each other. Everyone is terrorised.

Have you ever seen people so scared of the Prime Minister, as if he is Gabbar Singh?

We are announcing a new scheme ‘Yuvashree Arpan’ under which 50,000 youths will receive financial assistance of Rs 1 lakh for setting up a enterprise

We have given due recognition to all languages – Hindi, Urdu, Nepali, Gurmukhi, Santhali, Ol Chiki, Kamtapuri, Rajbongshi, Kurukh, Kurmali

Dumurjola is being developed as a Khel City.

National-level study lauds Kanyashree’s role in reducing domestic violence on women

A recent national-level study conducted jointly by researchers from the Indian Institute of Management, Indore and Shiv Nadar University has appreciated the role played by the Bangla Government’s Kanyashree Scheme in reducing a young woman’s chances of being subjected to domestic violence.

The study delves into the causal link between early marriage and exposure to domestic violence, and underlines the importance of policies to tackle child marriage by incentivising families to continue girls’ education and delay their marriage.

In this respect, schemes like Kanyashree Prakalpa have been found to be highly effective. Kanyashree uses economic (conditional cash transfer), social and awareness-building methods to sensitise communities on the benefits of delayed marriage.

The effectiveness of Kanyashree, a brainchild of Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, has been endorsed time and again, at both the international and national levels. In 2017, the scheme has been awarded the United Nations Public Service Award in the category of ‘Reaching the Poorest and Most Vulnerable through Inclusive Services and Participation’.

It also won the following honours:

  • United Nations WSIS Award 2016 in the category of ‘E-Government’
  • SKOCH Award for Smart Governance and SKOCH Award of Merit for 2015
  • Women’s Empowerment Award from the Bengal Government for 2014
  • CSI Nihilent Award for E-Governance for 2014-15, and
  • Manthan Award for Digital Inclusion for Development (South Asia and Asia Pacific) for 2014-15
  • Currently, there are approximately 52.3 lakh recipients of the monetary benefits under Kanyashree (as on Nov 9, 2018).

The State Government celebrates Kanyashree Dibas on August 14, as a day dedicated to the empowerment of the girl child. No other government in Bangla has done so much work for the girl child as the Trinamool Congress Government.

Swapner Bhor scheme to provide employment-linked training to Kanyashree beneficiaries

The State Government’s flagship Kanyashree Scheme is now being extended, to provide training to the Kanyashree beneficiaries to make them employable.

Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, who had given the name ‘Kanyashree’ has given the name to this scheme too – Swapner Bhor. Under this scheme, K2-level Kanyashree beneficiaries, that is, those who have crossed the age of 18 years, would be given the technical training.

Giving the above details, the State Women & Social Welfare Minister said that the scheme would be implemented soon. The training would be provided in collaboration with the Technical Education, Training and Skill Development (TET&SD) Department.

The K2-level Kanyashree beneficiaries get Rs 25,000, provided they satisfy two clauses – they should remain unmarried and should continue their studies. Now they would be provided technical training alongside their studies so that they don’t face much trouble getting gainful employment.

The training would be provided as per two categories – technical and mechanical. A K2 beneficiary has to apply online for any one branch, through the State Government’s Kanyashree website.

After the applications are accepted, the applicants would be provided counselling – regarding the course contents, benefits and types of employment opportunities available.

Every course would entail 300 hours of training. The trainees would be given a daily stipend of Rs 50. There are currently around 16 lakh K2 beneficiaries. Beneficiaries in the districts as well as in Kolkata would be given the training.

Source: Bartaman

Kanyashree acclaimed for e-Governance

Ever since Mamata Banerjee led Maa, Mati, Manush Government took office, the Bangla Government has been leading the strife to digitise the process of governance. These efforts have been recognised with various awards, specially in the spheres of e-governance, e-taxation and digitisation of financial and welfare schemes.

One of the key reasons for the Bangla Government’s flagship scheme, Kanyashree, bagging the large number of awards and receiving such recognition is that it has been digitally managed from the day of its founding, making it more accessible and transparent. The NIC has developed the software for free; there was no pilot project or dry run. The project had gone live and online from day one and without digitisation, it wouldn’t have been possible to encompass 50 lakh beneficiaries.

Any girl student wishing to join the scheme has to fill up a government form manually and get it certified by the head of the institution that she satisfies the criteria that family income is within Rs.1.20 lakh and that she is unmarried. The bank is now ready to open an account for the candidate. The institution uploads the data online, which will be accepted only if it carries a legitimate bank account number. Existing infrastructure to pay salaries has come in handy for the Kanyashree project.

As of 2018, there were 16,500 institutions which have started Kanyashree. Schools and colleges in remote areas without e-connection have been empowered to avail of the community centre services, which have been set up by the panchayat department for online data entry for its various schemes.

The scheme in itself has been celebrated on a number of competitive forums for its e-governance aspect.

It has won

(a) Manthan Award for Digital Inclusion for Development (South Asia and Asia Pacific) 2014 under the category of E-Women and Empowerment

(b) National E-governance Award 2014–2015 awarded by the Department of Administrative Reforms and Public Grievances, Government of India,

(c) Order of Merit Award, 2015 for Smart Governance,

(d) CSI-Nihilent Award for e-governance, 2014-15,

(e) United Nations WSIS Prize 2016 Champion in e-Government Category

The accolades received by the scheme are indicative of its huge success and the massive change it has been able to herald in Bengal. The state, earlier known to be affected by high incidence of child marriage, has now emerged as a ground for women empowerment and increased incidence of secondary and higher education among women.

Achieving this has been no mean task, and the farsightedness of the Chief Minister’s e-governance aim has shown and paved the way to it.