50 % of Slum Children in Delhi Underweight: Study

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Photo Credit : UNICEF

Photo Credit : UNICEF

Half of the children residing in slums of national capital are underweight, a study released by NGO Child Rights and You (CRY) showed on Tuesday.

According to the survey on the status of health, nutrition and education of children below the age of six years in slums here, 25.6 per cent of the 50.2 per cent underweight children are severely underweight.

Only 31 per cent of the children under the age of three in the capital received at least one vaccination, while 45 per cent were stunted, the survey called ‘Are Children Getting A Healthy Start’ stated.

It also highlighted the issue of gender imbalance as 25 per cent girls received at least one dose of vaccination compared to 39 per cent boys.

The study was conducted in Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Bengaluru and Kolkata.

The study highlighted that 62.2 per cent of the children in slums in Chennai were underweight, while Kolkata and Mumbai slums have 49 and 41 per cent underweight children respectively. In Bengaluru, 33 per cent children were found to be underweight.

CRY’s regional director (north) Soha Moitra said: “Early childhood, spanning from birth to the age of six years, is the crucial period when the foundation of cognitive, physical and socio-emotional development, language and personality are laid.”

Soha emphasised on the need for nutrition security like immunization and vitamins supplements for such children.

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